International Organization for Migration (IOM) has disclosed that 62,422 Ghanaians have been identified in Libya.
According to IOM, the increasing number of Ghanaians in Libya has pegged Ghana as the fifth-highest nationality after Egyptians, Nigeriens, Chadians, and Sudanese out of 38 different nationalities seeking asylum in Libya.
Over 450 Ghanaians have been rescued from detention camps in Libya since June 2017.
The IOM said in a statement that, these persons are part of 706 Ghanaians that have been brought back to Ghana over the past 11 months.
The statement also indicated that a recent batch of 148 Ghanaians touched down in Accra on Tuesday via a charter flight from Libya, and of this number, 142 were men, with four women and two children.
“This is the fourth charter flight organised by IOM through the EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration, allowing Ghanaians stranded in Libya to voluntarily return home since June 2017, bringing the total number of returns to 706 (661 men, 45 women). The majority (70%) of the returnees are being returned from various detention centres in Libya, while the remaining are from the cities,” the statement from the IOM noted.
Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, Chief of Mission of IOM Ghana, indicated that “the number of Ghanaians returning from detention situations in Libya remains high, highlighting the need for continued interventions to ensure their protection.”
The statement from IOM also revealed that the number of returnees from the Western Region in Ghana has increased, though the Brong-Ahafo Region, Ashanti Region and Greater Accra Region are generally known as the areas of high migration rates.
“While traditionally Ashanti Region, Brong-Ahafo Region and Greater Accra Region were the main areas of origin for Ghanaian returnees, in recent months, the Western Region has become the second highest regarding the number of returnees (18%). Returnees will have the opportunity to benefit from reintegration assistance which can consist of counselling, referrals to services including psychosocial and medical, and other support as needed and depending on the services available in the country,” the IOM statement said.