House Committee Decries Absence Of Policy On Diaspora

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Rep. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Chairman, House of Representatives? Committee on Diaspora, has identified the absence of a policy framework on Diaspora as a big setback for Nigeria's economy.

She made this known when the committee met with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Anyim Pius Anyim, in Abuja on Thursday.?

Dabiri-Erewa described the situation as an embarrassment on the world stage, adding: “Nigeria remains one of the few countries without a Diaspora Policy and this has not helped our economy.’’???

She called for the observance of the annual celebration of Diaspora Day in Nigeria with consistency.

“That programme must be strengthened, it must be encouraged and it must not be killed,’’ she said. ?

Dabiri-Erewa stressed the need for Nigeria to have a viable policy on Diaspora geared toward handling matters relating to the well-being of Nigerians living outside the shores of Nigeria.?

According to her, if the migration policy is duly implemented it will go a long way in resolving issues of migration from the country.?

“If we can get it out of the shelf, we will go a long way in solving issues of migration as it affects our nation.’’??

She noted that most Nigerians now had problems abroad; saying government must show concern about the problems of its citizens.?

“As a government, we must be responsive to the problems of our people.’’??

Responding, the SGF said that the issue of Diaspora Day should not be left in the hands of government alone.?

Anyim assured the committee that he would take up the issue with President Goodluck Jonathan.

He said that the president was about to appoint a new Special Adviser on Diaspora to underscore his desire to work with Nigerians abroad.?

The SGF stressed the need for a harmonious working relationship between the committee and the present government.?

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