A new Transit Centre to aid the reintegration of Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs has been inaugurated in Lagos.
Located within the Lagos State Relief and Ressetlement Camp in Igando, the Centre which was funded by the EU and implemented by the International Organization for Migration, IOM, will be managed by the State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA.
In a message, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu noted that the IOM and the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons,NCFMRI, had requested to use some of the facilities at the Relief Camp for the Transit Centre while the IOM on their part will also provide services and upgrade the existing facilities
The Governor, whose message was delivered by the State Commissioner for Special Duties and Intergovernmental Relations, Mr Tayo Bamgbose-Martins said the State plans to establish a third relief Camp in Ibeju Lekki axis as part of measures to make it easier for Migrants and IDPs to reintegrate.
“Due to logistics and high cost of accommodating returnee migrants, the IOM & National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons,NCFMRI, decided to partner with Lagos State Government to provide accommodation for affected persons. Before this initiative for collaboration with LASEMA, the State Government has already in place the LASEMA relief camps at Igando and Agbowa and Plans are underway to have the third relief camp at Ibeju-Lekki” He said
In her remarks, the Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons, Hajia
Imaan Suleiman-Ibrahim described Lagos state government as a ready partner with the Commission in the area of migration management and the assistance of Persons of Concern to the Commission.
Hajia Imaan pointed out that the Migrants Transit Centre, the first of it’s kind in sub-Sahara Africa marks a new chapter in the care of the displaced.
“This landmark collaboration writes a new chapter in our continued partnership with the progressive government of Lagos, as a trailblazing partnership between a Federal Government Agency, a State Agency and an International Organization, and it is noteworthy, that this would be the first-of-its-kind Transit/Reception Centre for Migrants in sub-saharan Africa. Aafter performing a needs assessment, the Commission pledges to install two (2) five thousand (5,000) litres water reservoirs, to ensure continuous water supply to the hostels where our POCs would reside, as well as installation of five (5) solar-powered streetlights to ensure 24 hour visibility around the premises” she said.
Earlier, LASEMA’s Director-General, Dr Femi Oke-Osanyintolu said the new transit centre, would reinforce IOM and Nigeria’s capacity to help the most vulnerable but also help to press home the message on the dangers of irregular migration.
The LASEMA DG said “I believe that, as we go forward, our focus should be on two things: prevention and solutions. The call I would like to make here today is for an enhanced compact of solidarity, capacity-building and efforts to mitigate the significant environmental impact of large refugee population”
The Transit centre is designed to accommodate four hundred persons between two to twelve nights at a go.