By Sunday Ani
A non-governmental organization, The Migrant Project (TMP), has taken the campaign against irregular migration to the doorstep of young Nigerian footballers whose dreams are to play professional football in Europe and America.
The organization, last week, organized a football tournament in Ejigbo for eight teams whose players were selected from Surulere, Kosofe, Alimosho, Somolu, Ajeromi, Eti-Osa, Epe, and Amuwo Odofin in Lagos State.
The eight clubs that took part in the tournament included Mercy FC, Divine FC, Young Strikers FC, Peace FC, Sammy FC, Dynamite FC, Diamond FC and BFA FA.
According to the Team Lead, TMP Lagos, Mrs. Amaka Nneji, the enlightenment campaign became necessary following the revelation that most young footballers in Nigeria have been duped of their money by human traffickers and fraudulent football agents, who had promised to assist them travel overseas.
“We want them to understand the risks involved in irregular migration and human trafficking because a lot of them have been deceived by traffickers, who promised to take them to very good clubs in Europe, where they would make a lot of money, but at the end of the day, they were duped.
“We found out that most of them in the past had paid up to N800,000 to these agents, who eventually disappeared into thin air with their money. This has been going on for some time now, that is why we decided to take this campaign to them so that they would know the realities on ground and make proper, informed decisions to avoid such costly mistakes,” she said.