FEW hours after 144 Nigerians
voluntarily returned from Libya,
another aircraft carrying 257 of their
compatriots, yesterday, landed at the
Murtala Muhammed International
Airport, Lagos.
Spokesperson for the Lagos Airport
Police Command, Joseph Alabi,
confirmed this in an interview with the
News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos.
Alabi said the returnees arrived
aboard a Libyan Airlines aircraft at
the Cargo Wing of the airport at about
1.30am.
He said they were assisted back
to Nigeria by the International
Organisation for Migration and the
European Union after being stranded
in the volatile North African country enroute
Europe.
“We received another batch of
Nigerians early this morning from
Libya. They comprised of 65 adult
females, 179 adult males, seven children
and six infants.”
He also confirmed that four of the
returnees had medical cases and were
promptly taken away on an ambulance
for treatment.
According to him, the returnees were
received by officials of the National
Emergency Management Agency,
NEMA, Nigerian Immigration Service,
National Agency for the Prohibition of
Trafficking in Persons and the Federal
Airport Authority of Nigeria.
NAN reports that another set of 144
Nigerians had arrived on Tuesday
at about 6.45pm aboard a chartered
Buraq Airlines aircraft with registration
number, 5A-DMG.
They were received at the hajj
camp area of the airport by the wife
of the president, Haija Aisha Buhari,
represented by the wife of the Governor
of Lagos State, Bolanle Ambode.
Also on ground to receive them
were the Senior Special Assistant to
the President on Foreign Affairs and
Diaspora, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, and
officials of other government agencies.
Federal government said it has a
record of 2,778 migrants registered in
“accessible” detention camps in Libya,
ready for repatriation.
The federal ministry of foreign
affairs, in a statement signed by its
Spokesperson, Tiwatope Elias-Fatile, on
Tuesday, said the country’s embassy in
Libya had been visiting detention camps
to identify Nigerians for registration.
The ministry stated that those
registered were issued emergency travel
certificates.
The ministry also explained that the
embassy, in collaboration with IOM,
repatriates 250 migrants weekly and had
returned 3,000 of them so far.
“From the 2,778 registered Nigerians
who are still in detention camps, another
set of 250 migrants will be arriving on
Tuesday, December 5 via the Murtala
Mohammed Airport, Lagos, at 7.00pm, to
be received by NEMA officials.
“The embassy, in collaboration with the
IOM, repatriates 250 Nigerian migrants
by flight to Lagos weekly – each flight can
accommodate only 250 passengers.
“The repatriation is a continuous
exercise and the embassy routinely issues
the requisite travel documents to the
migrants.
“The embassy will continue to engage
the legitimate government in Libya and
other stakeholders in addressing the plight
of Nigerian migrants in that country.”
The ministry said the Foreign Affairs
Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama, had
invited the Nigerian Embassy’s Head
of Mission, Iliya Fachano, to Abuja for
consultations.
It added: “He is in Abuja already and
during the period of the consultations;
arrangements have been made for him
to address press conferences on the
issue.”

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