United Kingdom authorities yesterday deported 48 Nigerians who were flown into the country around 7: am in a chartered aircraft.
The deportees, 44 males and six females were said to have been deported for various offences ranging from fake, expired, overstay and involvement in drugs and other related crimes.
They were received and screened at the cargo terminal of the Murtala Muhammed International‎ Airport, Lagos‎‎ on arrival by immigration officials.
A report prepared by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, security department indicated that 48 deportees arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos at exactly 6am yesterday aboard a chartered B767 belonging to PITAN Airways with registration number ETA.
According to the report, the deportees were made of 44 males and four females. Some of them were taken to state criminal investigations department, Alagbon, Lagos, depending on the crimes they committed.
A top FAAN security official who was at the airport during their arrival said deportation of Nigerians is a recurring phenomenon, adding that there are many of the citizens who flee Nigeria in search of the proverbial Golden Fleece.
One of the deportees said he was arrested by British Police and was not allowed to even take his belongings before being deported. The few others who claimed that they don’t have relatives in Lagos, were stranded at the airport.
Recently, Nigeria expressed concern over UK’s plan to deport 29,000 Nigerians, and has insisted that due process be followed before Nigerians are moved out from the UK.
Recently, the Acting Nigerian High Commissioner in London, Mr. Olukunle Bamgbose, bemoaned the migration and removal policy of the UK Government, which has placed a deportation tag on 29,000 Nigerians. He said that the migration policy was a result of the mi¬gration crisis created by the troubled regions in the world.
“I think about 29,000 Nigerians have been designated to be deported. We are insisting that due process must be followed before Nigerians are really removed from the UK to Nigeria,” he said.
Bamgbose gave four conditions that should be met by the UK immigration office before the commission could accept the migration and deportation agenda.
“First, we must ensure that they are really Nigerians; they are medically fit to travel; all the legal processes must have been completed and that they have roles to play in Nigeria. You do not expect someone who has not been to Ni¬geria for 30 to 40 years, and does not have any fam¬ily, to be deported just like that. If he is deported, he will constitute social problems to us in Nigeria; so these are the sore points that we have at the moment,” the envoy said.
‎It learnt that two anti-deportation activists stormed the gate of an immigration centre near London’s Heathrow airport, in an attempt to stop a chartered flight to Nigeria from leaving.
According to reports, they were part of a group of activists that on Tuesday evening protested the UK government’s decision to deport hundreds of illegal migrants to Africa.
The protesters formed a blockade in a bid to stop a bus carrying the deportees from the centre to Stanstead airport for a flight to Nigeria, Ghana and Sierra Leone.‎

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