‘Why smuggling of migrants should be urgently tackled’

Migrants. PHOTO: GOOGLE.COM/SEARCH?

Governments at all levels and relevant agencies have been urged to tackle smuggling of migrants, because the far-reaching advantages of migration done within the context of available conventions are being lost to irregular migration perpetrated by Smugglers of Migrants.

This was the position of participants at the end of a three-day European Union funded workshop on Smuggling of Migrants (SOM) organised by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).

They observed that SOM is not abating in Nigeria, constituting threat to national security, economy and socio-political sanity and well-being of the country.

The participants, who also noted that there is lack of synergy between the agencies coordinating migration management in Nigeria, like the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and the media, said women and children are most vulnerable victims of SOM.

They therefore said there is urgent need for agencies managing migration in the countries to synergise with the media for effective campaign against SOM. The participants called on NIS to develop a proactive information management system on migration related issues, as well as a robust social media engagement strategy to counter the narratives on SOM.

“There is need for media organisations to establish Migration Desks for effective reportage of migration and related issues, while the NIS and Foreign Affairs Ministry should develop effective and dynamic ways of engaging the diaspora communities to mitigate SOM,” participants urged.

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