The tragedy of the slave trade in Libya

Slaves in Libya -7

The news has been raging for days and I still have no words. My heart is heavy, my soul is broken, and my brain cannot comprehend it. Running in search of a better life, black people are being sold, captured and enslaved by their own brothers. I know Libyans think they’re superior because they’re a few shades lighter, but the sights of the slave trade in Libya that we’ve seen in the last few days have been horrific.

So instead, I will stick to what I know: these are some of the images that have come out of Libya.

Here’s another thing I know: contrary to what Nigerians living in plush countries are saying, no one goes through Libya for the fun of it. There are Nigerians (most of them abroad) who say that the victims of slave trade in Libya should also be held responsible for their actions. They clamour that they are lazy and don’t want to work, that’s why they are trying to get abroad.

It is the HEIGHT of insensitivity to sit in a country that is ruled by law and order and assume that the only thing driving people to desire a better life must be greed. The same better life you are enjoying.

What we need to do is to create living conditions that are not so HOPELESS that people will take risks that defy logic. It is all very well and good for me to sit in the abroad and disapprove of their choices, but what pushes a human to say “If I can just make it past Libya (Libya!!!!) I will be fine”?!

I would never try to go through Libya for anything; not even if you told me heaven was on the other side. I like my Sky TV, my Samsung S8 and my unlimited data. I like watching movies, I love eating amala. My main problems are how to eat mince pies without getting fatter. I’m COMFORTABLE. Heaven through Libya sounds like a fool’s errand and I would never do it.

But if I were hungry, dying, and lost relatives to abject poverty. If I counted my mother’s ribs before she died and we have to make a decision on which of us eats today, or how far to walk for clean water. And then you told me that just on the other side of Libya lay a dream; that maybe just getting across would mean I could work, send home money, alleviate this stifling poverty, helplessness and despondency, then I’d lace up what’s left of my holey shoes and walk through hell without a moment’s hesitation.

We have to understand that this is how these people think. Or you think the escapees on the Libya-bound boats are Lekki dwellers? I just feel like we shouldn’t assume we know what people went through before they made certain decisions.

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#Update: NCFRMI confirms they are actually 242 Nigerian Migrants as some names were omitted from the Manifest.. . . The Nigerian Migrants En-route to the hotel accommodation provided for them. The Edo State Government sent some of their officials to receive returnees from Edo State, who would be taken back home and given support to restart their lives back in Nigeria while NEMA and NCFRMI would oversee the next level of actions and support for the others in Lagos. More information regarding this soon. . . Time: 12 Midnight | Tuesday 28th November, 2017/ 29th November 2017. . . Federal Government Of Nigeria in collaboration with IOM (International Organization of Migration) have been working together in facilitating the return of Nigerian Migrants in Libya for over a year now.. Many had traveled illegally through the desert trying to reach Italy via Libya before finding themselves in tight situations, thrown into jail for illegal entry or falling into the hands of wrong people and being sold into slavery/prostitution . . . . On return to Nigeria, Officials from IOM and federal government agencies – NEMA and NCFRMI @ncfrmi_sw (National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons) are always on ground to receive them at the airport. . . They were profiled and registered with Food, Accommodation and Financial assistance given to them to support their reintegration back into the society. This has been the general procedure since last year as over 3,000 Nigerian Migrants have been returned from Libya. . . The work continues… – Live Report by @NikkiLaoye (NCFRMI Southwest Voice of Refugees and IDPs/Founder of Angel 4 Life Foundation @ncfrmi_sw @Angel4LifeFoundation ) Ps: It’s been a long tiring emotional day for me, hence the look on my face. The stories I have heard..hmmm. It is well. . . #NCFRMI #LibyaSlaveTrade #Angel4LifeFoundation #NikkiLaoye #Libya #AtTheAirport #TheLibyaSituation . . @instablog9ja @bellanaijaonline @olorisupergal @officialhiptv @goldmynetv @krakstv @onlyinnigeria @funny_african_pics @tundeednut

A post shared by Nikki Laoye ⓥ 🇳🇬 (@nikkilaoye) on


And while we’re on the matter, I have never been one to fold my arms and say “But what is the government doing???

I know for a FACT that we are ruled by uncaring, grasping, insensitive beasts, but Buhari sure is surpassing himself on this one. He makes statements about tragedies in France and mass shootouts in America – a country that legalises the bearing of arms – both countries losing a few dozens each time.

Not a word about the 26 ladies dead in Italy; not so much as a fart about hundreds of Nigerians being sold into slavery. I’m sure he’s “not aware” as usual, but please, turn on one of the rat-infested TVs in Aso Rock sometime and SEE WHAT IS HAPPENING TO YOUR PEOPLE! And if your ongoing illness won’t let you see, then surely your PR people have eyes??

My heart is heavy. I will leave this here. All i can do is all Africans ever do when it’s all gone tits up – pray.


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  1. I tell you, if Ghadaffi did not die it could have been worst, yet my question is “where are the African leaders “? Are there nothing like African Union again?
    I can’t even believe this is happening in our own continent (AFRICA) . My suggestion is that, all other African countries should rise up and declare war against that evil country called Libya otherwise other country like Egypt will start as well.
    Now Nigeria Government is sleeping while her citizens are being sold into slavery. Common! Can someone just wake this sleeping giant? …wake up mr. President and others in governance before its too late.

  2. If those who sold themselves into slavery put in half of the efforts they WASTED on the SUICIDAL TRIP in engaging themselves in productive activities in Nigeria,they would not have gone through ‘hell’ in another man’s land.It is an unfortunate occurence.

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