Fulanis repatriated

The Fulani nomads before their repatriation from Ho.FORTY-NINE Fulani no mads from Oyo State in south-western Nigeria, who entered Ghana through unapproved routes on Friday, without valid travelling documents, have been repatriated.

They were repatriated less than 48 hours after the Police and the Ghana Immigration Service personnel, intercepted them at the Krachi Nchumuru District in the Volta Region.

After screening, they were transported on a bus to the Aflao border, where the personnel of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), handed them over to the Togolese authorities for their onward journey back to Nigeria, through Benin.

One of the women, who was in labour while they were being transported to Ho on Friday for screening, was rushed to a clinic at Chinderi where she delivered successfully. She was left behind with her baby for further medical attention.

The rest, made up of six men, 42 women and children, spent the night at the Residency at the instance of the Regional Minister, Madam Helen Ntoso before being repatriated.

Briefing newsmen at the Residency, Madam Ntoso said the nomads were conveyed from Nigeria on a bus whose driver abandoned them at the Pontoon site at Dambai.

The Fulanis who were travelling with all their personal belongings, including mortars pestles, motorbikes and wooden beds, hired two buses to transport them across the river to the Krachi Nchumuru District, the minister said.

She said their movement was monitored by the security personnel, who accosted them at Krachi Nchumuru.

The Fulanis, according to the minister, told the security personnel that they were going to Alhaji Kaduna, who lived in the Krachi. But, when questioned by the security men, the man denied knowing them or expecting visitors.

A spokesman of the travellers, Alhaji Adam, later said at the Residency that they were travelling to Chinderi, near Krachi, to settle at the Zongo.

Adam, who spoke Hausa, dismissed claims that they were fleeing from Boko Haram terrorists or trying to avoid election violence in their country.

He said through an interpreter that, they already had relatives living at Chinderi Zongo who have been engaged in cattle rearing for the past two years.

The Regional Minister said although the ECOWAS protocol allowed for the free movement of citizens of member states across the sub-region, it did not endorse the use of unapproved routes.

“Besides, travellers are expected to carry valid travelling documents or proper identifications”, Madam Ntoso added.

From Alberto Mario Noretti, Ho

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