As the conflict between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the paramilitary group, Rapid Support Force, continues to escalate, Nigerian students studying in Sudan are making plans to evacuate to Ethiopia.
The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) in Sudan has released a statement urging their colleagues to gather at three specific locations in Gadarif, before making the journey to Ethiopia.
The Nigerian government has expressed concerns about the situation in Sudan, with the Federal Government through the Chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, describing it as “risky” to evacuate Nigerians from the country at this time.
The conflict has claimed over 400 lives, with approximately 3,500 injured. The violence, which started on April 8th, has entered its 15th day as clashes between the Sudanese armed forces and the paramilitary group, Rapid Support Force, continue.
The situation has led to the displacement of thousands of civilians who fled the capital, Khartoum. All airports and land borders in Sudan have been closed by the Nigerian government as the emergency situation in the country is very complex, making it difficult to evacuate Nigerians from the troubled nation.
The NANS statement advises Nigerian students to bring their passport original/photocopy or school ID card, and those who don’t have the funds to contact either their school or state president. The transportation cost is $100, and departure time is set for 1 pm. Those who do not have their passport at hand should also contact their state or school president.
Gadarif, the location where students will gather before making the journey to Ethiopia, is the capital of the state of Al Qadarif in Sudan. It lies on the road that connects Khartoum with Gallabat on the Ethiopian border, about 410 kilometres from the capital.
The Federal Government of Nigeria has established a search and rescue committee to come up with the safest way of evacuating Nigerians stranded in the troubled nation. The government is aware of the widespread public concern about the situation in Sudan and is working to ensure the safety of its citizens. The evacuation of Nigerian students from Sudan to Ethiopia is a positive step towards ensuring their safety amidst the ongoing violence.