We were 55 that left for Libya, but a total of 25 people died in the desert – Deportee

In another pathetic development for the teeming Nigerians seeking greener pastures in Libya, a total of 98 indigenes of Edo State have been repatriated. The deportees arrived Lagos through Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos.

Media reports confirm that a total of 164 Nigerians, including an Edo woman and her children, received assistance from the International Organisations for Migration (IOM) and state government for the flight.

Deportees

Officials from the National Emergency Management Agency were commended for effectively collaborating with IOM on the project.

Mrs Abieyuwa Oyemwense, Secretary to the Edo State Task Force against Human Trafficking who confirmed the details told newsmen that the entire number of deportees were all males.

“This is the eighth batch that we have so far received. We are going to keep them in the hotel for two nights after which they will be reunited with their families,” Oyemwense said in a press briefing.

She noted that the government has set up programmes to train them in different skills, and those who wish to return to school will be assisted to do so.

“In addition, the government is also paying them monthly stipends for three months,” she said, adding that more returnees are expected on Wednesday.

Retunees-Libya

Most Nigerians think the deportees should be thankful for getting a second chance to escape from modern-day slavery and trafficking in war-torn Libya.

The first batch of returnees, a total of 275, returned at 9 p.m. on Tuesday while the latest returnees touched down at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos at about 1.30 a.m. on Thursday.

According to Allafrica.com, the returnees who arrived aboard a Libyan Airlines aircraft at the cargo wing of the airport, comprise of 65 adult females, 179 adult males, seven children and six infants. They deported emigrants expressed happiness to have escaped from their tortuous and precarious life in Libya, from where many of them wanted to cross the Mediterranean to Europe.

Alex Otoide, who is one of the deportees said he witnessed the sale of 20 Nigerian girls and that he was lucky not have died in Libya.

In her words, “They sold like 20 girls in the night…It was God that save me because more than seven people died from hunger and thirst inside the prison.

“Can’t you see how I look lean, sick and hungry…I need to go for medical checkups and treatment,” she added “Honestly, I left Nigeria with N500,000 but I spent six months in Libyan jail after the man that took my money disappeared. We were 55 that left for Libya, but a total of 25 people died in the desert.”

According to another deportee, Osas Blessing, there’s a man named Charles, who has links to some men in Libya.

“I gave Charles N450,000 but when I got to Libya he increased it to N600,000,” Blessing said of his travel experience. “He is very wicked and does not care for human lives. At a point, the Benin man told us ‘if you die you die'”.

The deportee continued, “He pushed us into the sea at the wrong time. I heard he just left Nigeria with new passengers to Libya even after frustrating many of his fellow citizens.”

Unbelievable Tradition: Women strip to celebrate boy’s transition to adulthood

Nigeria’s foundation as a nation is solidly built on its enviable socio-cultural diversity, a blessing that can be maximised for the greater good though the reality shows this beloved country has suffered more for it. The people of Edo state are known as tradition keepers, hate it or love it.

A recent traditional ceremony which requires women to go half-naked while young boys are initiated into adulthood, was held in the state. This is one of the many cultural celebrations where nudity is considered an indispensable part.

Pictures taken at the event were posted on Facebook, and people have aired their opinions on a culture which some of them described as “weird and bizzare”.

Critics are yet to figure out the relationship between nudity and a boy’s transition to manhood.

Worse still, the fact that those men at the event were all clothed while women who have nothing to do with such celebrations are made to strip naked, calls for an immediate action from human rights activists.

Isn’t this an an outright violation of women’s rights?

The ceremony was reportedly held on 29 October in Lulehaland, Uzebba, Edo state, according to a report from Tori.ng

The Facebook user who shared the information is known as Comrade Osiki Odion. He wrote: “I want to officially, traditionally and culturally thank friends who grace the age grade celebration in my community Uzebba-Iuleha, Owan West, Edo State, Nigeria for their show of love and belief in promoting and encouraging the values and essence of our culture.
“Of importance, there is none like this culture in the entire globe.
 
“To my Facebook friends I love and cherish your comments.
“Our aim is to put this age-long tradition in the global scene for it to attract local, national and international tourism.
“We as children of Africa must not allow our Reverend culture to go into extinction. Our names, our language, our greetings, our dressing, our marriage, our naming, our cooperation, our administrative tradition, our economic and social values must stand us out in the world.
“Thanks. Our ancestors will continue to bless you all. ESE.”

“I am just wondering why I am not seeing any manhood displayed since its manhood celebration,” a concerned citizen asked after seeing the pictures.
 
“Nice one, I don’t poke nose into what I don’t know our cultural heritage must not go into extinction because of the so called civilization. Those bickering about this need to be schooled historically about the need for the renaissance of our cherished traditions,” another netizen argued in defense of the tradition.