Journalists Forum uncovers Nigerians in critical situation in Saudi Arabia
Journalists International Forum For Migration (JIFORM) has uncovered a set of Nigerians in hundreds battling with critical situation in Saudi Arabia.
JIFORM President, Mr Ajibola Abayomi, disclosed this in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja
Abayomi said that the body had profile of 138 ladies trafficked to the Arabian nation by a company identified as TTCO.
NAN reports that this came days after the body raised the alarm over critical situation of some trafficked 30 Nigerian ladies stranded in Lebanon.
He said that the issue was unraveled in the data made available to JIFORM by the Rescue Africans In Slavery (RAIS), a foundation advocating against human trafficking and child labour.
According to him, some of the names on list included 23 years old Amina Idris, an indigene of Kano whose passport is beign withheld by her host.
“Atanda Esther Idowu, 42 with passport number A09118374; Salawu Yetunde Victoria, 37, with passport number A08233422 both from Oyo State.
“And Gift Israel Johnnu, 25, with passport number A09136678 from Rivers State, ” he stated.
Abayomi commended the spirited effort of Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State for picking the bills of 55 victims out of 120 list of trafficked ladies in Lebanon recently released by the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM).
“Since we launched rescue campaign that led to the rescue of the 30 girls and others in Lebanon by the Nigerian government, several international agencies had been reaching out to us.
“And we have been directing them to relate with the National Agency for Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) accordingly.
“JIFORM is committed to humanitarian service and we are willing to do more, ” he said.
The JIFORM President called for prompt attention from the Federal Government, saying some of the ladies at different locations in Saudi Arabia were in critical health condition and needed to be attended to in good time.
Also worried by the situation, the Executive Director of RAIS, Ms Omotola Fawunmi said that temporal arrangement had been made to give the ladies first aid treatment in Saudi Arabia.
Fawunmi, however, pleaded for action to save the lives of the trafficked victims.
According to her, one of the victims who spoke under anonymity, an English and Social Studies graduate from Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education, Lagos state appealed for help urgently.
“She said all efforts to get the attention of the Nigerian ambassador in Saudi Arabia have proved abortive as non- English speaking staff placed as front desk officers refused to give them attention.
“The 26 years old lady on salary equivalent of N70, 000 per month lamented that she was fed up with hash treatments being meted to her by her host.
“The Ogun state indigene said she applied as a teacher through her agents over two years ago only to be given out as house maid when she arrived at the country,” she stated.
Also appealing for government’s attention, The Migrant Project (TMP), Media Lead, Tayo Elegbede, noted with concern that:”The trend of stranded Nigerians in dire conditions across the Middle East was, unfortunately, worrisome.
Elegbede appealed to relevant authorities to ensure the safe and speedy return of these ladies and other Nigerians trapped across the middle east.
“Unarguably, there is the need to address the fundamental factors responsible for gross undocumented migration of Nigerians, particularly from South-West states, to Middle East countries.
“Public campaigns and enlightenment on the risk and realities of irregular migration and human trafficking need to be advanced across the nooks and cranny of the country, whilst providing viable alternatives,” Elegbede stated. (NAN)