A total of 542 stranded Nigerians in the United Arab Emirates, UAE, have been evacuated back home by the Federal Government.
The evacuees, consisting 79 males, 460 females and 3 infants, arrived at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja on board Maxair chartered flight on Sunday morning at 4:29am.
They were received by a Federal Government team led by the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, and airport officials, security agencies including National Commission for Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons, NCFRMI, NAPTIP, Nigerian Diaspora Commission, NDLEA, Nigerian Correctional Service, Nigerian Customs service, Port Health Services, NCDC, among others.
On arrival, the returnees were screened by the Health officials, profiled by various relevant agencies and cleared by Nigerian Immigration Service before being given a token of transport fare by NEMA before leaving the airport.
Earlier, the director-general NEMA, Mustapha Habib, who officially received the returnees on behalf of the Federal Government admonished them to learn from their experiences and be law abiding citizens to promote economic growth and positive image of Nigeria.
The NEMA boss, who was represented by the director of Finance and Accounts, Sani Jiba, said the federal government had approved the evacuation and provision of the token for the returnees to support their local movement back home.
In her remarks, the consul general of Nigeria in Dubai, Atinuke Mohammed, who accompanied the returnees back on the flight, appreciated the federal government for the special intervention in safe evacuation of the stranded citizens back home.