There are legal options for safe migration, as well as opportunities and alternatives to emigration in Nigeria.
This is the focus of a campaign spearheaded by the African-German Information Center (AGIC), Hamburg, and The African Courier Verlag, Berlin, with the support of Germany’s Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which will
commence in Nigeria on September 12, 2017, with an event at the Centre for Management Development (CMD), Lagos.
The campaign, with the major goal of raising public awareness of the dangers of irregular migration, and explain the legal requirements for regular migration with the overall objective of promoting safe migration, on the platform of the “Migration Enlightenment Project in Nigeria,” will work with the media, civil society and government agencies to dissuade young people from taking illegal routes to Europe.
Dignitaries billed to talk at the one-day event are Hon. Rita Orji, chairperson of the House of Representatives
Committee on the Diaspora, Kenneth Gbandi, director of AGiC and chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation Europe, and Femi Awoniyi, publisher of The African Courier.
According to a press release from AGIC, the campaign, with the theme “Look Before you Leave,” seeks to educate young people on the “opportunities for legal migration to Europe and give a realistic picture of the situation of irregular migrants in Europe while also encouraging youths to look at positive alternatives to emigration available in Nigeria.”
It is aimed at dissuading Nigerians from illegal migration, which makes Africans “victims of people-smugglers who
deceive prospective emigrants into paying sometimes thousands of dollars for a supposedly easy passage to Europe only to be abandoned in the transit countries such as Libya or Niger, where they’re exposed to harsh
living conditions and human rights abuse,” AGIC said.
The statement quoted the International Office for Migration (IOM) as saying “up to one million migrants are trapped in transit in Libya. The frustration of their precarious situation and the dangers they face in the North African
country, which is in a state of conflict, make many migrants so desperate to willingly take the grave risk of boarding rickety boats to cross the Mediterranean to Europe.”