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Russia-Ukraine crisis: “Most Nigerians who are here on hustle are not willing to leave. They prefer to die here.” – Nigerians trapped in Ukraine react

Following the ongoing Russian-Ukraine crisis, some Nigerians who are trapped in Ukraine has reacted to the federal government offer to evacuate them.

Daily Trust spoke with a couple of them over the phone on Thursday, February 24, and they dismissed the offer and said most Nigerians would prefer to stay back, than return to Nigeria.

Edidiong Cyprian Ukpakha, who has been living in Ukraine for years, said the government’s plan is unrealistic as the airspace has been closed down. He also said the government never fulfils their promises.

“I was here in 2013 during a similar crisis when they promised to evacuate Nigerians and they never did. So, this is the attitude of every Nigerian in Ukraine that they will promise and not fulfill.” he said.

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He also berated the government for telling Nigerians trapped in Ukraine to take responsibility for their safety when “other countries are making provisions on how to evacuate the citizens, providing phone lines to call, shelter and aids to their people and the Nigerian government is telling us ‘You are on your own’.”

“Let’s tell ourselves the truth, there is no airspace to fly in, America evacuated her citizens a long time ago, and other countries. Now Russian troops are all over Ukraine already. We rely on the prayers of Nigerian pastors and bishops to save us from this.

The Nigerian embassy here are not helping matters and they don’t want to hear the truth.” said.

A medical student in Kiev, Treasure Chinenye Bellgam, said it would take a lot of humility for Nigerians to return to the country as it’s like they are being demoted.

“I am a believer in Christ Jesus and I have to ask God for direction whether to return to Nigeria or not. Most Nigerians who are here on hustle are not willing to leave. They prefer to die here. It’s like after God has lifted you one step higher you want to go two steps backward, it’s like being demoted.

But you need a lot of humility to go back to Nigeria because some people sold lands, cars, and the rest to come here and they have amazing stories.” she said

Another Nigerian living in Kiev, Julius, encouraged the government to provide an aircraft but noted that many Nigerians will not return.

“Considering the economy in Nigeria, I think a lot of people would look for the safest place here than returning to Nigeria. They should do it (supply of aircraft) so that it becomes a choice for those who would want to stay back or those who want to return.”

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