The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Monday received another batch of 144 stranded Nigerians from Niamey in Niger Republic.
Dr Nuradeen Abdullahi, NEMA Coordinator Kano Territorial Office, received the returnees at the Malam Aminu Kano International Airport in Kano.
Abdullahi, represented by NEMA Kano Head of Human Resources, Mr Suleiman Sa’ad-Abubakar, said that the returnees arrived at the airport at about 2:30 p.m
“The returnees were transported into Nigeria by SKY MALI Airlines, operated by Ethiopian airline B737-400 with registration number UR-CQX”
He said that the returnees were brought back under the care of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) from Niamey through a voluntary repatriation programme.
“The programme is for the distressed, who had left the country to seek greener pastures in various European countries and could not afford to return when their journey became frustrated,” he said.
He said that the returnees included 106 male adults, 16 female adults and 22 children (10 female and 12 male).
Abdullahi noted that the returnees are from Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Abia, Sokoto and Edo among others.
He said the returnees will undergo training in various skills. ”My advice to Nigerians is that they avoid endangering their lives by travelling to seek for greener pastures in other countries, adding that no country is better than Nigeria.”
The agency had between February and March received 300 stranded Nigerians from Niamey, Niger Republic.
Speaking to newsmen, one of the returnees Fatima Muhammad, a widow and mother of two, while recounting her ordeal, said she travelled to Algeria to seek for greener pastures with her kids.
According to her, “I had no one to cater for me and my children. I decided to seek greener pastures. I regret embarking on the ill-fated journey. I thank God we came back safely. Nigeria is far better than where we went in our quest for better lives. We suffered.”