Moved by a viral video in which some Nigerians were lamenting over their alleged arrest in Northern Ghana from where they were taken to Afulawo a border town for detention, the Eze Ndigbo Ghana has made some clarifications where he described the problem as self inflicted.
In a statement, the royal father lamented that activities of few bad eggs was tarnishing the image of other hard working Nigerians abroad. He also added that Nigeria leadership refusal to promote good governance at home as well as speak up for Nigerians abroad has worsened the situation dragging the country’s name in mud.
While giving insight into origin of the crisis, HRM Ihenetu said: “ The president of Ghana, Dr Akufo-Ado issued executive order on the closure of the border because of COVID-19. In March 2020, couple of months after, he gave executive order for opening of airport and airlines resumed flight while land borders remain closed.
Nightclubs were also closed here. Gathering of over hundred people were also prohibited. Things that the president ordered to be shut down remained shut down. Any body that goes against these laws is violating the executive order of president of Ghana. Any man or woman who crossed the border of Ghana illegally, regardless of your country of origin as long as you are not a Ghanaian automatically becomes illegal entry. This is because Immigration did not approve your coming in into the country. So anybody that comes in here since March last year till date are illegal immigrant.
“Secondly, Most Nigerians living here in Ghana are seriously violating the laws of the land. Most of us are seriously working on what the government doesn’t want us to do.
Remember that Ghana is a small country when compared with Nigeria. Lagos alone is about 40 million. Ghana as a nation is a small country. So it is easy for the authority to spot bad eggs or anybody that is committing crime against the land. So these are the challenges we are facing here.
“Thank God that the country as a nation also welcomes Nigerians. It would interest you to know that there are over 2 million Nigerians in Ghana and the country accommodated us. It is activities of some Judas among the 12 that are causing problem here and making the people to move against some Nigerians here.
“So in this instance where our children are hanging out there in Afulawo, Nigeria High commission in Ghana are working tirelessly to address the situation to make sure that the issue is handled. And from my palace here as Eze Ndigbo Ghana, I am also working seriously with some of my elders and sub-kings under the throne, even the Eze Udo Ndigbo in Afulawo, over there, I have also informed him and he has intervened to see that the matter is resolved. So please, let Nigerians at home know that we are working hard to end the deadlock.
So it is two things here, either they are deported, or anybody that has documents would remain in the country. More especially for those that came in after the executive order, I don’t think the authority would allow them to stay. So we have to dig down and find proper solution to the problems.
“We must also tell ourselves the truth. The problem facing Nigeria today is because we have bad government. Every sons and daughter in that country Nigeria want to get out looking for greener pasture somewhere round the world and if we are rejected in our own country, how much more in alien countries, you think they won’t reject us? They would. It is like that name Nigeria has now become time bomb and any thing can trigger it to explode.”
HRM Ihenetu concludes by saying that the government is not protecting our country Nigeria, as it should. and as such our name is being tagged in the mud, while people in the Diaspora see Nigerians as stupid people and destroyers.
The royal father further explained that while Nigeria is the best specie of mankind one can find anywhere in the world, the system of government in the country has dragged the country into mud.
“Tell me what this young ones, some of them below 15 years are looking for in foreign land?
Although poverty can chase one outside his or her fatherland the matter is worsen by unemployment and poverty. Even when people have the skill to work, no electricity. When the skill and electricity is available, there is no security. No protection, life is not safe in our country and that’s why our children are crossing border to eek out living.
“All this young ones hanging out there in Afulawo are breadwinners of their respective families back home but look at where they are now. These are problems Nigeria government must solve.”
On relationship between Nigeria since time immemorial, HRM Ihenetu said Ghana is a country that loves Nigeria a lot and that’s why the country often referred to Nigeria as a big brother. He however added that if our president is not talking by defending the people, it would be difficult for some of this things to be handled.
“Nigeria embassy could be doing the best they can, but tell me, when will Nigeria government stand up and speak in the same way American president defend Americans abroad. Nigeria is the giant of Africa and as such anywhere we find ourselves, we must be treated special but it all depends on how our leaders project, protect and defend us. All these things are happening to us because Nigeria leadership doesn’t have value of their citizens at heart.
As a permanent solution to this type of problem, HRM Ihenetu call on President Muhammadu Buhari, the foreign minister and Nigeria political leaders to create value for Nigerians abroad through good governance so that people outside the country would really see Nigerians as true giant of Africa.
As part of his efforts to ensure that the detainees rapidly gain freedom, HRM Ihenetu swung into action by liaising with Nigeria High Commission and Nigerian embassy in Ghana. The move yielded result when the royal father learnt that about 300 out of over 500 detainees at Aflawo detention camp has been released and has returned to Nigeria.
Daily Sun gathered that the remaining 200 inmates still at the camp are there due to lack of transportation fare.
In a bid to assist them, HRM Ihenetu in a conversation with leader of the camp learnt that Ghanaian immigration has released them but because most of them have lost their phones and as such don’t have means of reaching out to their families for financial assistance.
Most of them also admitted that they were recruited by Q-Net a marketing firm base in Ghana to market their products and that they were smuggled into Ghana after the country close it’s land border to check spread of COVID-19.
In his response HRM Ihenetu said everything is being done to ensure that they are reunited with their families in Nigeria. He promised that as paramount ruler of Ndigbo in Ghana, he would meet with elders in council on how money would be raised to assist those stranded pay their transport fare back to Nigeria.
HRM Ihenetu also calls on parents to be weary of organisation who recruits teenagers with the promise of lucrative jobs as most of this youths end up as destitute and miscreants in foreign lands.