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FG reacts to proposed mass deportation of Nigerians from Ghana

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THE Nigerian government says it is working with its Ghanaian counterpart for the repatriation of citizens illegally residing in Ghana. 

Chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) Abike Dabiri-Erewa said on Monday that there were reports of escapees from a jail break in Nigeria allegedly found trying to cross into Ghana through illegal means.

Dabiri-Erewa said that the Nigerian mission had been engaging the Ghanaian authorities to resolve the matter, while ensuring that innocent Nigerians did not suffer unjustly. 

“Those guilty will face the law as we await updates from the mission…They should be returned to their country,” she said. 

Ghanaian authorities had announced plans to deport a total of 507 illegal immigrants residing in the country, including 494 Nigerians and 13 Burkinabes. 

Assistant Superintendent of Police and spokesperson for the Regional Police Command David Fianko-Okyere said during an interview with Ghana News Agency that a new 24-hour patrol programme launched by the region had led to the arrest of the illegal immigrants. 

He said preliminary investigations by the Ghana Police Service indicated that those arrested stayed in the country without proper documents.

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Seven hundred Nigerians alleged to have been involved in criminal activities such as fraud, prostitution and armed robbery were deported in 2019.

In 2020, the Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed raised the alarm over what he described as the negative reportage of issues concerning Nigerians resident in Ghana by the Ghanaian media, which he said was brewing xenophobic attitude towards Nigerians. 

Mohammed had criticised Ghana over its “harsh and openly-biased judicial trial and pronouncement of discriminately-long jail terms for convicted Nigerians,” saying such maltreatment would no longer be tolerated.

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