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Ghana’s Sweet Revenge On Buhari’s Govt, Deports 723 Nigerians As FG Protests

The Oasis Reporters

February 20, 2019

Ghanaian President, Nana Akuffo-Addo (left), President Buhari of Nigeria.

It has become obvious that Ghanaians have very long memory and know how to serve revenge very cold. In the late 70s when the Ghanaian economy was at its lowest ebb, hundreds of thousands of Ghanaians flooded Nigeria to do odd jobs like shoe shining, mobile tailoring, many became hairdressers, barbers, painters, gardeners etc, while the educated ones found jobs as teachers, even doctors and nurses. A lot more nubile Ghanaian ladies flooded dinghy hotels to find work in the lucrative sex trade in almost all the Nigerian cities and villages.

By the early 80s under President Shehu Shagari, the Nigerian economy started contracting and the Nigerian government decided to expel all illegal immigrants, the Ghanaians were hardest hit, in the West African sub region.

Soon afterwards, Major General Muhammadu Buhari overthrew President Shagari in a military coup. Due to falling oil prices and the poor management of the economy by the Buhari administration, the Nigerian economy went into an unprecedented recession. Buhari’s foreign exchange controls as a panic measure, like saying even musicians like Fela Anikulapo-Kuti should not take out undeclared currency abroad even if it meant going to play music abroad that would fetch foreign currency. Fela Anikulapo-Kuti was sent to prison.

Furthermore, the regime pounced on illegal Ghanaian immigrants who were doing menial jobs including prostitution and expelled them. Yet, the economy did not get better.

Years down the line, the Ghanaian economy bounced back and Ghanaians started going back home, such that today, Ghana has become the largest Foreign Direct Investment, FDI destination in West Africa, taking over from Nigeria. And there has been a reverse migration, of Nigerians going to live and work in Ghana that has a better economy and a focused leadership, such that the Ghana government can look Nigeria, eyeball to eyeball, and expel Nigerians from their country.

Consequently, the Nigerian High Commissioner to Ghana, Ambassador Michael Abikoye, has protested the inhuman treatment of Nigerians by the Ghana Immigration Service with the deportation of 723 Nigerians between 2018 and 2019.

Abikoye said this at a meeting between him and the Comptroller-General of the GIS, Kwame Takyi, in Ghana, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.

The high commissioner said 723 Nigerians were deported on alleged illegal stay, cybercrime and prostitution between January 2018 and January 2019.

According to him, 81 Nigerians were deported on alleged cybercrime and illegal stay in January, while 115 have so far been deported on the allegation of overstay and prostitution.

The high commissioner cautioned Ghana against inhuman treatment of Nigerians, warning that any ill treatment of Nigerians would not be acceptable to the Nigerian government.

“Although, the GIS had linked prostitution and cybercrimes as some of the reasons for the deportation, it is improper to deport Nigerians for alleged illegal stay in Ghana.

“There are several Ghanaians living in Nigeria and the Nigeria Immigration Service has never deported any of them on the grounds of illegal stay because of the brotherliness between our countries,” he said.

The ambassador presented to the CG a copy of the mission’s records on deportations of Nigerians from January 2018 till date.

The ambassador also showed photos of some of them who sustained injuries on their legs, arms and eyes during torture.

In his response, the CG, Takyi, said the GIS was compelled to act because of the conduct of some Nigerians in Ghana.

He alleged that “some Nigerians had become laws in themselves; they block major Ghanaian streets where they drink, fight and stab one another.”

He said, “This unruly behavior which contravenes the local laws in Ghana has led to directives from higher authorities for the arrests and eventual deportation of those who do not have the requisite immigration papers.”

The turn around seems ironic as General Buhari is President this time around , 34 years after and he is seeking reelection, then the sound of revenge blares from Ghana in the same West African sub region to signify that Ghanaians have not really forgotten.

Greg Abolo

Blogger at The Oasis Reporters.

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