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Nigerian Libya returnees (file photo)

Seven pregnant women are among the 218 Nigerian migrants who voluntarily returned to the country on Tuesday from Libya where they had been stranded on their way to Europe.

The group arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, about 3.44 a.m. aboard a chartered Libyan Airlines Airbus A330-200 aircraft with registration number 5A-LAU.

The returnees comprised of 46 adult females, five female infants, 161 adult males, two male children and four male infants.

Concise News learned that they were brought with the assistance of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the European Union (EU).

South West Zonal Coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Yakubu Suleiman, said a total of 8,129 Nigerians had returned so far under the EU and IOM Assisted Voluntary Returnees Programme.

One of the returnees Titilayo Kayode-Owojori, from Ile Ife, Osun, told newsmen she regretted embarking on the ill-fated journey.

“Nigeria is far better than where we thought we could get better lives. The Libyans live with the sweat of the blacks,” she said.

“If the Arabs see us working and collecting wages, they wait and burst our houses to collect the money. If they don’t see any money, they will kidnap us and ask us to call Nigeria to send us money to free ourselves. If we can’t raise money, we will be sold or imprisoned,” she added.