By Temidayo Ajibola

As a new democratic government takes over in Nigeria, the Journalists International Forum For Migration (JIFORM) has sent a goodwill message to the nation’s 16th President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu urging him to create a separate ministry for diaspora and migration engagements.

He also pleaded with him to ensure a proper decent job negotiation for Nigerians across the globe in order to reduce the incidences of irregular migration and human trafficking.

Dr Ajibola Abayomi, the President of the JIFORM with over 300 journalists covering migration matters across the continents in a statement, buttressed the appeal for the creation of the ministry, saying it was long overdue given the gains from human capital migration to the nation’s economy.

He recalled that the Central Bank of Nigeria in April acknowledged that from 2015 till date that the Nigerians in diaspora have remitted over $16 billion in the last eight years sustaining Nigeria’s ranking as the highest earner in the entire Sub-sahara Africa.

“We greet President Bola Tinubu as he ushers Nigeria into a new era. With his excellent track records as an achiever, there is no doubt that he would improve the wellbeing of the nation by tapping from the rare human resources that abound in the diaspora. Mr President please make creation of the Ministry of Diaspora as one of your priorities.

” This is not a duplication of Foreign Affairs ministry ‘s duties but a necessary attention to boost the migration and human capital development.

“We beg you not to close your eyes to the pains Nigerians are subjected to across the world in the name of labour migration. Kindly jettison the repeated theories or undue lamentations of the book makers and be bold to initiate a decent job negotiation with the employers of labour in the Middle East, Europe and others so as to de-market human trafficking and irregular migration from Nigeria. Do this for history to continue to be kind to you sir.”

Pledging the loyalty of the JIFORM, he enthusiastically stated thus: “We are proudly available to work with you whether through appointments, selections or otherwise in order to reshape the nation’s disapora policies.

“You can count on us to tame the daunting challenges ahead. Certainly, Nigeria shall overcome. We are available at your service or request throughout the day, sunshine or at the dead of night to earn this great country an enviable status among the comity of nations on migration matters” Dr Ajibola said.

Apart from initiating series of capacity building on migration issues in West Africa and the annual African Migration Summit, the fourth JIFORM Global Migration Summit would hold in Toronto between October 2-14.

In November 2022, the JIFORM organized the intercontinental migration summit in partnership with the City University, New York City in Brooklyn; a national migration summit on February 9, this year in Lagos and recently facilitated a workshop supported by the Nigerian-German Center for Job, Migration and Reintegration (NGC) for Nigerian journalists on sensitization strategies against irregular migration in Abuja between May 22-23 in Abuja.

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