By Ibukun Emiola
Ibadan – Mr Kaseem Bolarinwa, executive member, Nigerian Diaspora Organisation in Germany, says raising awareness and introduction of stiffer penalty for traffickers will reduce irregular migration in Nigeria.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Bolarinwa disclosed this in Ibadan on Tuesday at an the event organised by Youth Enlightenment Empowerment of Self-sustainability Initiative (YEESSI).
According to Bolarinwa who is also the chairman of YESSI, the programme is targeted at Nigerian youths to end irregular migration.
“I believe the way out of this menace is to enlighten the people and also to empower them.
“If the country is conducive for them, if they are able to achieve their dreams, be self sufficient and sustainable, they won’t migrate.
“And if they migrate, it will be through regular means in order to acquire more knowledge and also bring development to this country.
“I will advise the youth to quit taking irregular means to migrate because of the harrowing experience of those who undertake such ventures.
“Some irregular migrants stay more than 10 to 15 years without paper and are ashamed to return home.
“Some don’t even make it to their dream country and those who did cannot move freely for fear of being deported and so it is like a partial prison.
“Also, I believe that having a stiffer penalty for traffickers and those abating them will significantly reduce the incidence of irregular migration,” he said.
Also, Mr Tunde Aderemi, Secretary General of YEESSI, said the event was targeted at university students across Oyo State to educate them on the dangers of irregular migration.
“The theme of the programme is ‘Fight Against Irregular Migration to Europe’ and is in partnership with the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“We have narrowed it down to ‘Dangers Associated with Irregular Migration’ with the aim of showing Nigerian undergraduates and youths who are bent on irregular migration the adverse effects.
“People tend to travel to Europe through the sea, desert and all sorts of routes and when you look at the statistics of those who do, it is alarming.
“Aside sensitising people against this, we also educate them on how to migrate through regular means.
“We are asking them not to travel and if they do travel it should be through regular means.
“Most Nigerians do not even know that education in Germany is not commercialised, so we are exposing them to viral information.
“We will also educate them on the skilled programme most European countries use right now for their ‘Skilled Blue Passport,” Aderemi said. (NAN)