VIDEO: FG to evacuate 5,500 Nigerians stranded in Sudan by road – Onyeama
Nigerians stranded in Sudan will be evacuated by road, according to Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama.
Many are stranded in the North African country following a power tussle that has resulted in a crisis. The development has led to calls for the evacuation of the nation’s citizens.
But speaking on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, Onyeama said those stranded can’t be evacuated by air.
“We have been given the cost estimate and all the details. They gave us a figure of 5,500 who are ready for evacuation. Obviously, what you need in a situation like this is a place where everybody can congregate before you start moving them out. Because the airports, as you pointed out in your report, it is out of commission. The only viable way out is by road.
“But of course, it is not totally safe so you are going to require the government to provide some security and a safe corridor out.”
He explained that “Our situation is particularly challenging because the numbers are so great. Some the countries like the US and European countries have started evacuating.
“But what they’ve been evacuating were actually their diplomatic staff. They haven’t been able to start evacuating their citizens there. We can’t evacuate all our diplomatic staff at the moment because they need to also coordinate the evacuation of all those students that we’re talking about.”
His comment comes as a statement from the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Khartoum, signed by the Charge D’ Affairs H.Y Garko, advised students who make up about 80 percent of the stranded persons to stay indoors.
The FG said it was still dangerous to embark on a journey toward the borders of Sudan without security clearance and guarantee from the Sudanese authorities.
The Embassy also reassured the Nigerian students that their safety and well-being were of priority concern.