FCTA Cautions Youths Over Irregular Migration Abroad

By: Josie Mudasiru & Emmanuel Tortiv

The FCT Administration will continue to pay close attention to the issue of irregular migration ‘Japa’ as it concerns the migration of valuable human resource at the detriment of the Territory and the nation at large.

The FCTA Permanent Secretary, Olusade Adesola, said this at a one day Sensitization programme organized by the FCTA Desk Office of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) at the Conference Hall of the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA).

The Sensitization programme which was centered on the pains and gains of irregular migration, popularly known as ‘Japa Syndrome’, brought together experts and leaders of thoughts who spoke extensively on the growing trend among youths, women and the vulnerable in the Federal Capital Territory and Nigeria as a whole.

The Permanent Secretary, who was represented at the occasion by Abdulrazak Leramo, a Director in Education Secretariat, appreciated Abike Dabiri, NIDCOM Chairman for her continuous support to the FCT Desk of NIDCOM.

His words: “Your efforts at drawing the attention of Nigerians in Diaspora to how they can effectively contribute to the economic and sociological growth of the nation is laudable.”

“Let me add that the FCT Administration is open and welcomes useful collaborations with enterprising Nigerians in Diaspora and other partners for the growth and development of FCT,” he said.

Adesola implored the youths to pay attention to the conversation around migration and be rightly guided in making well informed decisions on the issue.

In her remarks at the occasion, the NIDCOM Chairman, Mrs. Abike Dabiri Erewa expressed hope that ‘Japa’ will turn to paja where Nigerians will look back home to come back and stay to enjoy their country.

She disclosed that about 11 Nigerian Medical Doctors, four of whom are from FCT who ‘japaed’ have returned back to Nigeria and therefore, enjoined youth to be extra cautious.

She encouraged FCT leaders and elders to always speak to their people to understand the implications of taking ‘Japa’ decisions.

Earlier in her opening remarks, FCT NIDCOM Focal Point Officer, Sarah David Ariyo, said of the more than 17million documented Nigerians in Diaspora, over 156,778 returnees were recorded in 2022 alone due to the irregular nature of their migration.

Mrs. Ariyo said the Sensitization was aimed at bridging the gap by liaising with government and vulnerable groups to ‘drastically reduce the unprecedented upsurge in illegal or irregular migration of Nigerians for foreign countries. A trend fondly referred to as Japa Syndrome.’

Some victims of irregular migration also gave their horrifying experience of embarking on the mission to go abroad through the Libyan corridor through Sahara Desert.