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Enough of Nigerians’ maltreatment abroad, government warns, demands reciprocity

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The Federal Government has deplored the maltreatment of Nigerians abroad, warning that its citizens deserve same hospitality it accords other nationals resident in the country.

Chairman of the Nigerian Diaspora Commission, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, who addressed State House correspondents at the weekend in Abuja, stressed that innocent Nigerians should not be made to suffer on account of infractions committed by a few bad eggs overseas, adding, however, that appropriate sanctions must be brought to bear on those who run foul of extant laws in their host countries.

Her words: “Right now, we are dealing with the issue of attacks on Nigerian traders in Ghana. We have the assurances of the President of Ghana through the High Commission here and ours in Ghana that Nigerian traders will be protected.

“We are also going to be emphasizing that the life of one Nigerian means a lot to us anywhere in the world.“We also have the case of the professor in Ghana whose appointment was terminated by his university because of the tape he released. Well, it turned out that he didn’t actually record, I mean that was a private meeting with Nigerians in Ghana, it was like a private discussion.

“And he also claimed that part of the tape was actually doctored. The matter is being looked into by the Nigeria High Commission in Ghana and I believe those matters will be resolved subsequently.” She continued: “There are equally issues happening around our neighbouring countries like Togo. In Togo, we have Nigerians attacked. One woman alleged that she was raped and she turned out to be his (rapist) girlfriend.

“We have also seen the Togolese ambassador and made it clear that the lives of Nigerians must be protected anywhere they are because we take care of others here and we deserve to be taken care of.

“If a Nigerian commits a crime, let him face the punishment, but you cannot penalise a nation and its citizens.“So, we will be working more on that as we appeal to Nigerians to be good ambassadors wherever they find themselves.” Dabiri-Erewa submitted that government had waded into the incident in the United Kingdom (UK) where an angry Nigerian reportedly damaged some vehicles at the High Commission. She added that a stakeholders’ meeting on the subject had been scheduled in London.


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Abike Dabiri-Erewa
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