By Maimuna Sey-Jawo
IOM Chief of Mission in The Gambia has said that it is impossible to prevent migration or irregular journey, but said it can be “managed”.
“Migration is not a problem to be solved,” Fumiko Nagano said, “but a reality to be managed”.
She was speaking at a two-day convergence on messages development on irregular migration, funded by UK Aid. It brought together media personnel and other stakeholders to a local hotel in Senegambia.
The gathering seeks to provide protection, direct assistance and durable solutions to migration.
Speaking further, the chief of mission said: “We at IOM believe that migration is inevitable and necessary.”
According to her, migration is not a new phenomenon, rather, what is new is the increasing number of migrants, particularly irregular migrants around the world.
“Priorities must be to save lives, protect the right of migrants and prevent them from undertaking irregular migration in the first place.”
She said the two-day forum will mark an important milestone in the roadmap towards awareness raising on irregular migration in The Gambia.
Nagano evinced a strong desire for the development of a quality and context-specific communication messages to create awareness on irregular migration.
British High Commissioner Madam Sharon Wardle thanked participants and tasked them to impart knowledge gained on others.