Journalism in the service of society

Reps move to ascertain number of Nigerians detained abroad

THE lawmaker representing representing Ovia Federal Constituency in Edo State, Hon Dennis Idahosa, today, sponsored a motion seekingg to ascertain the number of Nigerians detained abroad.

Speaking on the floor of the green chamber, Hon Idahosa noted that Nigerians are in almost all countries of the world, making exploits in sports, technology, business, education and politics and have been ranked as one of the highest educated immigrants in foreign countries.

According to him, the World Bank estimates remittances of around 24.3 billion per year and 6% of the country’s GDP, thereby making Nigeria one of the highest ranking countries of the world in remittances inflow.

But the lawmaker noted that many Nigerians are languishing in foreign prisons, many of whom are illegally detained, while some are exposed to poor living conditions, discrimination, sex exploitation and other forms of dehumanizing treatments.

Recall that in July, a former Commissioner for Arts, Culture, Tourism and Diaspora in Edo State, Osaze Osemwengie-Ero, had alleged that 300 Nigerian youths are illegally detained in Italian prisons.

The ex-commissioner, who was arrested and detained in 2019, said he was a victim of racial discrimination and manipulation by the Italian justice system.

Speaking further, Idahosa said international conventions and treaties prescribe that anyone charged with a criminal offence is entitled to fair hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal.

Citing a 2019 report by the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEPAD), the lawmaker said about 16,500 Nigerians are in foreign prisons “without legal representation and not knowing why they are in jail”.

He added that the situation requires urgent intervention as “many Nigerians are languishing in foreign prisons, some of whom are being illegally detained, while some are exposed to labour exploitation, poor living conditions, discrimination, sexual exploitation and other forms of dehumanising treatments”.

He said: “The World Bank estimated remittances of around 24.3 billion per year and six percent of the country’s GDP, thereby making Nigeria one of the highest-ranking countries of the world in remittances inflow.”

The motion sponsored by Idahosa was unanimously adopted after it was put to a voice by Idris Wase, deputy speaker of the house.

The lower legislative chamber mandated its committees on foreign affairs, justice, and inter-parliamentary relations to ensure compliance.

Comments are closed.

Naija Times