The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) says a 28-year-old Nigerian student has been reported missing in Northern Cyprus since August 2. The commission said this in a statement issued in Abuja by its Head of Media, Public Relations and Protocol, Abdur-Rahman Balogun. Mr Balogun said that the disappearance of the student was reported to the commission by his mother, Dije Ibraheem. The report of the missing student came barely 24 hours after NiDCOM repeated advisory to Nigerians against seeking educational succour in the Türkiye Republic of Northern Cyprus. He said that the missing student, AbdulSamad Abubakar, had called the mother on August 2, through another person’s phone number, crying “they have come to pick me up to a detention camp.”
“Mrs Ibraheem said AbdulSamad is a 300-Level International Relations student of Cyprus Science University and was living off campus.
“She said since that call on Aug. 2, 2022 from an unknown number, with her son wailing and asking for help, she has not known his whereabouts or heard any news from him or the school authorities.
“Confused on what to do, she reached out to the agent who secured the admission and travelling documents for her son but he was not forthcoming too.”
The woman also said she had written a petition to the Consular and Legal Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, before coming to seek for NiDCOM’s intervention, Mr Balogun added.
According to him, the woman’s prayer is to get her only son back to Nigeria alive.
“I am here today at NiDCOM to beg you in the name of God to help me bring back my son alive, as I am scared of hearing any bad news about my only child. Please help me, I am a single mother,” she was quoted as saying.
The Secretary of the Commission, Sule Bassi, received the petition on behalf of the Chairman of NiDCOM, Abike Dabiri-Erewa. He assured Mrs Ibraheem that everything possible would be done to locate her son and bring him back to Nigeria. Mr Bassi, however, reminded her that diplomatic services would be difficult because Nigeria and the United Nations had no diplomatic relations with Northern Cyprus. He, however, assured her that further investigation would be carried out by the commission in conjunction with the Nigeria Embassy in Ankara, Turkey.
“Here at NiDCOM, we are concerned about the welfare of Nigerians abroad as well as encouraging them to invest back home for national development,” he said.
The secretary advised Mrs Ibraheem to take care of her health, as the commission investigates the matter.
He reiterated the earlier advisory given by the commission against sending students to Northern Cyprus due to negative reports from there, especially from students. NAN reports that Turkey’s Ambassador to Nigeria, Hidayet Bayraktar, on Thursday issued an open letter describing the advisory by the commission as exaggerated. aNiDCOM however responded by releasing the list of Nigerians murdered in Northern Cyprus within three years.