The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has donated Awareness Raising Equipment to the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) to enhance education on safe migration in the country.
Items received included professional microphone system, audio mixer, loudspeaker, projection screen, generator, handheld power megaphone, photo-copy machine, torchlight and Sony sound recorder among others.
The donation was funded by the European Union (EU) Emergency Trust Fund for Africa through the EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration.
The Chief of Mission at the IOM, Abibatou Wane, explained that the donation was done to aid the campaign on the awareness creation of irregular movements to protect and save migrants’ lives while strengthening migration governance along the Central Mediterranean migration route.
She observed that the outbreak of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) had posed additional challenges on the economy and its socio-economic impact could drive more people to consider migrating as a way to cope once COVID-19 mobility restrictions were lifted.
Ms Wane regretted that the irregular migration would increase smuggling operations, thus the need to educate Ghanaians on the dangers associated with irregular movements.
“It is more than ever necessary to continue with our safe migration campaigns,” she stressed.
Ms Wane urged the GIS personnel to beef up the campaign strategy in reaching more youth across the country to educate them and also afford them with the necessary information about the risk of irregular migration.
Receiving the items, Mr Kwame Asuah Takyi, the Comptroller General of GIS, commended the IOM and the EU for their support and said the equipment would enhance their operations.
He stated that the support had a historic background dating back from 2014 to 2017 where EU supported the service in the establishment of the Migration Information Centre in Sunyani.
According to Mr Takyi, the IOM United Nations (UN) Migration 2020 report indicated that there were 272 million migrants which is an increase in line with the recent trend, hence his outfit’s campaign on migration.
The European Union Delegation (EUD) Ambassador, Ms Diana Acconcia, indicated that migration affect lives of people, communities and countries globally which has huge potential for development but when it was not properly managed could have dire effects on the migrant and the country.
“Today we still see too many Ghanaians risk their lives, resources and dignity by choosing to migrate irregularly. One of the reasons might be a lack of awareness about the dangers of irregular migration, and credible information on how to travel legally,” she said.
BY JOYCELINE NATALLY CUDJOE
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