Government will facilitate the re-opening of Ghana’s Embassy in Libya, Hon. Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, has disclosed.
Hon. Botchwey explained that the re-opening of Ghana’s Embassy in Libya had been necessitated by the recent shocking revelations by the CNN about the ongoing slave trade in Libya involving black African immigrants.
Speaking on the plight of Ghanaian nationals in Libya on the floor of Parliament, yesterday, she disclosed that Consular Officers were dispatched from Ghana’s Mission in Valetta, Malta to Tripoli to ascertain whether or not Ghana nationals were among the victims and also to assess the conditions of those reported to be in various detention centres and to offer them the necessary assistance.
She disclosed that in the report by the Mission to Tripoli to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it was stated that 168 Ghanaian detainees, who had been arrested on illegal immigration charges, were found in detention centres in Tajoora, Trek Al Sika and Trek Matar.
The report, Hon. Botchwey said, also indicated that the undocumented illegal immigrants had been issued with travel documents to facilitate their repatriation to Ghana with the support of the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
She commended the IOM for the positive role it had been playing in the repatriation of Ghanaian deportees from Libya and also in the effort to reintegrate them.
She disclosed that the Ministry, in consultation with the Interior Ministry, the Ministry of Gender and Social Protection and other relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, would be organising an emergency meeting of the Inter-ministerial Committee on Migration and come up with concrete measures aimed at dealing comprehensively with the situation of Ghanaian nationals in Libya.
In his contribution, Hon. Issah Fuseini, Member of Parliament for Okaikoi North, called for the development of industries to engage the youth economically and to assure them that they could make it without risking their lives to travel across the Sahara to Europe.
Hon. Fuseini urged African leaders to deal with the issue of economic migration with all the seriousness it deserved to discourage it.
On his part, Hon. Ras Mubarak, MP, Kumbungu, condemned the involvement of European countries in the invasion of an African country like Libya as an indictment on the African Union (AU), adding that going forward, Europe should not be allowed to impose their ideals on Africa as they did not understand the dynamics of the African continent.
Hon. Mubarrak urged the Ministry to provide counselling sessions to the deported Ghanaians to enable them reintegrate into the society easily.
The slave trade activity has been condemned worldwide by a scandalized public including the United Nations (UN) and the AU.
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has also forcefully condemned the slave trade in Libya as a reprehensible activity.
Source: ISD (Eva Frempon-Ntiamoah)