By Patience Danjuma
The Minister of Interior, Abdulrahman Dambazau has said the Federal Government was taking steps to curb irregular migration plaguing the country.
Dambazau who stated this in Abuja when he received the governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, said the government had raised a committee to examine and proffer solutions to the underlying factors making such migrations attractive.
He said that the proposed committee, which membership is drawn from Edo State and various frontline Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) – Ministries of Justice and Foreign Affairs, Department of State Security (DSS), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), would propose ways to contain irregular migration of citizens, especially the youth.
He noted that the present situation was a sad and sharp departure from the norm in which Nigeria was a major and attractive destination to migrants, lamenting that Nigerians were now irregularly leaving the country in droves.
The Minister added that irregular migration had become a national security threat that needed collaborative efforts to eliminate.
Earlier, the Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki, said his visit was to seek Federal Government’s support on a range of issues – stemming the tide of irregular migration, upgrading of prison facilities and maintenance of law and order.
According to him, irregular migration of Edo State indigenes had reached epidemic proportion.
He expressed dismay that from the data of returnees kept by the State, “more than 63% of trafficked persons were boys, which is an aberration from the usual practice of trafficking mostly girls.”
He added that 2,700 irregular migrants from the state had so far returned, adding that their rehabilitation was on-going.
Governor Obaseki said that through the debriefing of returnees, the state now had a data base, which would be made available to the Federal Government.
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