BY ISAAC OLAMIKAN
Comrade Solomon Okoduwa, the Senior Special Assistant on Human Trafficking to the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has dispelled insinuations that the state government is not taking adequate care of Libyan returnees of the state origin such that they are abandoned with no where to turn to at the end of the three months that they are under the government’s care.
In a chat with the Post on New Year’s eve, Comrade Okoduwa said:
“To say that the state government normally abandon the Libyan returnees after three months is not correct.
“What we do is that we take those that are stranded into protective custody until they have acquired the skills they need.
“They are not forced to pick a skill. They’re at liberty to pick any skill they need.
“Once we have a sizeable number interested in acquiring a particular skill we gather them at a place for them to undergo the prerequisite training.
“During this period, they are entitled to free accommodation, feeding etc and also monthly stipends. At the end of the training they are moved to a safe house.
“For instance, the 150 that were the pioneers in the ADP training project are now our ambassadors.
“At the end of the training the governor made what is called ‘seed money’ available for them to start off their projects.
“They also have joined us willingly as we embark on vigorous advocacy about the ills of human trafficking round the 192 wards of state.”
On the 17 man committee set up by the federal government to handle the issue of the evacuation of Nigerians trapped in Libyan territories, Okoduwa appealed for a better understanding of the situation so that the right people, especially those who have had bitter experiences of sojourning in Libya, are nominated to be part of the committee.
“The committee should not be hijacked by neophites,” concluded the activist who was at a time the secretary of the union of Nigerians resident in Libya.
BY ISAAC OLAMIKAN