How Libyan officials ‘raped, kidnapped’ stranded Nigerians


2017_2$large_Nigerians-returnees-Libya_8Some Nigerian returnees from Libya have narrated the hardship they were subjected to in the North African country. The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) facilitated their return after several months in Libyan detention facilities.

Some of the returnees said that they decided to leave Nigeria to seek greener pastures.

They said that they travelled to Libya with the hope of crossing to Europe through the Mediterranean Sea in search of jobs.

Bridget Akeamo, an indigene of Anambra, said her parents decided to send her to Italy when all hope of securing job after her school proved abortive.

Akeama, who said she left Nigeria in August last year, returned with a pregnancy of four months.

She said Libyan immigration officials arrested her while trying to cross to Italy.

“Ever since then, I have been moved from one prison to another until I was taken to detention camp in Tripoli,” she said.

“We were subjected to inhuman treatment while in prison, from the food we eat to the water we drink.

“Most of the young ladies in detention camp were raped by Libyan officials and if you refused their advances, it will be hell for you.

“Thank God I am back in Nigeria, I know all hope is not lost but it is painful that I will begin from scratch again with my unborn child.”

Stanley Iduh, 34-year-old indigene of Delta, said he was tricked by an agent popularly known as ‘Burger’.

According to Iduh, the agent promised to facilitate his journey to Spain through Libya.

He said when his hope of crossing into Spain was dashed in Libya, he decided to stay back and work in the Arab country.

“I worked in Tile producing company and their salary was good but unfortunately I could not save my money in the bank,” he said.

“I lived with other Nigerians. I dug a hole in the ground to save my money.

“Unfortunately, one day, some Libyans came, kidnapped us and inflicted punishment on us.

“They asked us to call our relations back in Nigeria and tell them to send N300,000 as our ransom.

“The $200,000 dollars that I saved, disappeared; they moved us to another place until we got to detention camp.

“Nigerians should be discouraged from travelling to Libya because they are not treating us like human beings.

“Our ladies were dehumanised by Libyan officials, it is very painful.”

Iduh, who said he sold the house left by his late father before travelling to Libya, urged the federal and state governments as well as wealthy Nigerians to create job for the youths.

“It was because I was jobless for three years that I was cajoled to travel abroad to look for greener pasture,” he said.

“I am back in the country after eight months, devastated and humiliated.

“I have gone to look for greener pasture but here I am today; I have brought nothing green back home.”

Paul and Marvellous Isikhuemhen are twin brothers who travelled to Libya in March and May 2016.

Marvellous said that they regretted travelling out of the country because of the bitter encounter in Libya.

He said though they secured a good job in a publishing house in Libya, “it was suffering and smiling’’ until they were given the opportunity to return home through the IOM.

Isikhuemhen urged the Nigerian government to stop young ladies from travelling to Libya, saying they were molested by Libyan immigration officials.

He said most Nigerian ladies bribe Nigerian immigration officers to secure travel documents to travel to Libya.

Isikhuemhen added that most of the children brought back home by these ladies had no fathers.

“I can boldly tell you that the children you are seeing in their hands and those pregnant ladies are products of Libya immigration officers,” he said.