Edo indigenes deported from Libya yesterday rejected the N1000 transport fare given to them by the state government for transport to their various destinations.
The protesting returnees said those who were deported to Nigeria en route Lagos airport earlier were given N41,000 on arrival while those of them who came through Port Harcout airport were given N1,000.
They threatened to match to the Palace of the Oba of Benin on a peaceful protest but were calmed down by the security agents and officials of the state Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force officials.
In response, the state government raised the transport intervention to N5,000
Responding to the row over the initial N1000 offer, the Attorney-General of the state and commissioner for Justice, Yinka Omorogbe, attributed the development to communication gap as Edo state does not give money on arrival.
“Returnees who came through Lagos state are on a different arrangement. They were given N41,000 on arrival by the International Organization of Migration (I.O.M) that was made available from European Union grant. Edo state has a stipend programme of N20,000 each for the returnees for three months and does not give money on arrival,” he said.
“ No amount was approved to be given to returnees at this stage. This amount is a not a stipend but a realization that the government is determined to make the programme succeed. You can’t expect people to trek to their various homes as many of them do not live in Benin. As such we approved N5000 transport fare that was not there before now,” he said