Jul 25, 2017, 10:47 AM
They must have heard about the dangers associated with illegally migrating to Europe through the high seas or the Sahara Desert, but still insist on venturing into the unknown.
We are talking about our youths who over the years have been forcing their way to Europe by all means.
For many of them, even if it would cost them their lives along the journey, they would rather venture into the trip than staying in Africa.
But do the youths really know what the trip really means for them, on a more serious note.
Well, perhaps some may know while others are being misinformed about the journey.
In The Gambia, in the past decade, for instance, many young and able-bodied men lost their lives in their attempts to enter Europe illegal.
The National Enterprise Development Initiative (NEDI) and the Gambia Immigration Department have joined forces this week to dialogue with youths over the issue.
We hope that our youths will listen to the advice, and take them seriously for their own good.
We do believe that forcing their way to Europe through illegal means is not a solution to their problems, but instead a disaster to their lives.
What we find disheartening is that some skilful and educated youths are also involved in illegal migration.
Our youths must learn to suffer and sacrifice for their country, rather than risking their lives in the name of entering a foreign land.
Going by recent unconfirmed reports coming from Libya, we urge our youths to cancel their planned trips or intention of going there, since it is not safe for them.
Information reaching this paper has confirmed that some Gambian youths are still engaged in illegal migration mainly via Niger and Libya routes said to be very dangerous at the moment.
Youth have to consider the risks associated with travelling in the Sahara desert and the high seas coupled with the current Euro crisis affecting many European countries.
We think this is not the solution and right decision for our youths to take.
While we are not saying no one should go to Europe, our argument is that going via legal means is the best option.
We also know the frustrations of our youth such as poverty, and limited employment opportunities; but we do believe that the monies they pay for these precarious journeys could be used for a start-up business for them.
Once more, we hailed the recent intervention by NEDI and Gambia Immigration Department whose Director General shared success stories of young Gambians who are excelling in the country, and some who messed up their lives by venturing on the perilous journey.
We are saying illegal migration is indeed not a solution at all.