The Federal Government has voiced concern that Nigerian students in the war-torn nation were attempting to reach the frontiers of Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, or Chad on their own. This comes as individuals are attempting to flee the ongoing situation in Sudan.
The government advised parents to urge their children to maintain composure and be in frequent contact with representatives of the Nigerian embassy in Sudan for instructions and updates while active attempts were being made to remove them.
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A joint statement by the ministers of foreign affairs, humanitarian affairs, disaster management, and social development that was signed by the permanent secretaries of the ministries outlined the government’s viewpoint.
They expressed “concern over the dire humanitarian situation in Sudan and empathise with the entire civilian population in the country, including the Nigerian students, and other members of the Nigerian community caught up in the ongoing crisis between the Sudanese army and the Paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.”
The statement was signed by Ambassador Janet Olisa, Director Overseeing the Office of the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Dr. Nasir Sani-Gwarzo, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.
It read in part: “The Honourable Ministers, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, MHADMSD, note with concern that some of these students are trying to find their way to contiguous borders of either Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia or Chad on their own.
“In line with the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari, the humanitarian sector comprising MHADMSD, National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA; National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons, NCFRMI, are working very closely with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Nigerian Missions in the countries bordering Sudan, as well as with other relevant stakeholders, especially the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, NIDCOM, Ministry of Health, the Nigerian.
Armed Forces, National Intelligence Agency, NIA, and international humanitarian organizations such as International Organization for Migration, IOM, to immediately evacuate these Students and other affected Nigerian citizens.
“The ministers, therefore, urge parents to advise their wards that while concerted efforts are being made to evacuate them, the students should endeavour to remain calm and maintain constant communication with officials of the Nigerian embassy in Sudan for instructions and updates.
“Furthermore, they are also advised to guard against undertaking the treacherous journey to the borders on their own, in view of the dangers involved.
“On this note, the ministers emphasise that concrete plans are underway, to deploy, very shortly, air transport to evacuate all stranded Nigerian citizens through the identified safe transit areas back home to Nigeria in safety and dignity.”