197 Nigerians return from war-torn Central African Republic

One hundred and ninety seven Nigerians, who escaped from war- torn Central African Republic arrived Yola on Saturday.

Charles Otegbade, the Director Search and Rescue of the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, made this known in Yola.

Speaking shortly after receiving the returnees, Mr. Otegbade, an Air Commodore, said the migrants were Nigerians after thorough investigations.

He said the returnees escaped from CAR unrest early last year.

According to him, they are the remaining Nigerians who are settled at international camps in Eastern Cameroon Republic.

“The development follows the closure of the international camps by the organisation at Kenzo and Garua Bulai, all in Eastern Cameroon,” he said.

Mr. Otegbade said the International Organisation for Migrants with the support of Cameroonian authority escorted them to Sahuda, a border town along Nigeria-Cameroon border in Mubi South Local Government Area.

The director confirmed that the 197 Nigerians were the last batch evacuated since the CAR conflict erupted in late 2013 and early 2014.

He said early 2014 at the peak of the conflict, NEMA with the collaboration of Nigerian Air Force rescued and evacuated over 2000 Nigerians from Bangui International Airport to Abuja.

“Those that were trapped in various locations in Central Africa and could not reach Bangui but escaped into Cameroon Republic for their safety.

“And so far, NEMA had evacuated and settled over 3,000 Nigerians returnees from CAR between 2014 to date,” Otegbade said.

Of those who returned on Saturday, Adamawa, Borno and Yobe had the highest number of 52, 41 and 29 returnees respectively.

Others are Gombe 16, Kano 12, Bauchi 9, Onitsha (Anambra) and Kaduna with one returnee each.

He confirmed that the remaining returnees were from Plateau, Kebbi, Sokoto Taraba and Federal Capital Territory.

He said that the agency had concluded arrangements to link all the returnees with their relations.

(NAN)


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