By Osaigbovo Iguobaro, Benin
Edo State Government has spent the sum of N300 million on migrant returnees from North Africa and Europe to the state in the past two years.
The amount includes the sum of N100 million used for the payment of stipends to the 4,943 returnees during the period.
Besides, a total of 3,329 of the migrants are male while 1,400 are female alongside 214 Children who were deported and returned to the State.
The State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe disclosed this at a media briefing on Monday in Benin City.
Quoting curiously from a demographic survey that was supported by Edo State Taskforce Against Human Trafficking (ETAHT), she identified push and pull factors that are responsible for vulnerabilities as Gender inequality, especially in the rural areas, poor working conditions, unemployment both in the rural and urban areas and lack of access to basic and social services such as health care, education, electricity supply.
She also listed other factors as lack of social protection, ignorance, decay in societal morals and values.
The Commissioner stated that Uhunmwode, Orhionmwon and Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Areas of the State as the most endemic areas for human trafficking and irregular migration.
According to her, “Edo State is the most affected State when it comes to the problem of human trafficking in Nigeria, having over 50 percent of the cases of human trafficking”.
In the light of the above challenges, Prof. Omorogbe said, the Taskforce has been involved in different programmes which include Advocacy, investigation, research, Prosecution. Research, and rehabilitation of Returnees migrant.
The Commissioner, paid tribute to International Organization for Migrants (IOM) and other international organizations for their support towards sensitization, rehabilitation and vocational training programmes for returnees in the past two years.