By John Okeke
No fewer than 256 Nigerians have been evacuated from Morocco and Niger Republic between Wednesday and Thursday, The Nation learnt.
Out of this figure, 98 Nigerians were evacuated from Morocco are expected back home today (Thursday), while 158 from Niger Republic had arrived the country Wednesday night.
The returnees are among thousands of Nigerians who were stranded in various countries abroad as a result of the global lockdown imposed since March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The flight from Morocco departed at about 9 am with 98 Nigerians on board of the Royal Air Maroc and expected to arrive the country later today, Thursday, 30th July 2020.
The Morocco returnees are mainly professionals and students from various institutions.
The flight is expected to arrive at about 1.30pm.
“A Royal Air Maroc (RAM) B737 -800 series aircraft conveying 98 Nigerians has departed King Mohammed V Airport, Casablanca to Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja.
“The aircraft which left at 0900 hrs is conveying professionals and students from various institutions stranded in the Kingdom of Morocoo since March due to international air travel restrictions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The flight which is also conveying 35 Nigeriens will make a brief stopover at the Diori Hamani International Airport, Niamey before proceeding to Abuja, to land at 13.30 hrs.
Meanwhile another batch of 158 stranded Nigerian migrants arrived the country from Niamey, Niger Republic at about 10pm on Wednesday.
The flight arrived Nnamdi Azikwe Int’l Airport Abuja at about 10.00 pm via Airpeace.
The flight was arranged by EU, IOM in collaboration with Nigeria mission.
The ministry also revealed that one of the Migrants, Aishatu Abdullahi could not make the flight as she was delivered of a baby boy on 24th July, 2020.
“Mrs. Abdullahi, her husband, the newborn child as well as three of their other kids will remain in Niger until such a time when another trip is organized,” the ministry revealed.