from EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – A TOTAL of 2 518 Nigerians have been evacuated from Sudan since the escalation of conflict in the latter a month ago.
Of these, 147 arrived this past weekend at the Nnamdi Arzikiwe International Airport in the capital, Abuja.
Seven of the individuals were infants.
The airlift from Port Sudan was the 15th flight in the exercise carried out by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) with relevant stakeholders in line with Nigeria’s mandate to evacuate its citizens that are in danger.
Nasiru Sani Gwarzo, the Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, welcomed the returnees on behalf of the Federal Government.
Evacuation opportunities are still open for any Nigerian in Sudan that wants to leave because of the armed conflict in that country, Gwarzo said.
Onimode Abdullahi Bandele, Director of Special Duties NEMA, also attended the reception of the returnees, who were cleared by the Nigerian Immigration Service.
The Dangote Foundation presented tokens of support and dignity kits to the returnees.
Most returnees have been students.
These citizens from Africa’s most populous country were among thousands of foreign nationals impacted by the civil war that erupted on April 15 in Sudan.
Student unions in Nigeria had accused the government of President Muhammadu Buhari of ignoring the students’ plight in Sudan.
– CAJ News