At least 112 migrants have died when a boat carrying Ethiopians and Somalians sank off the coast of the Somali land autonomous region in northern Somalia- The Australian
The boat reportedly had technical faults which led to the accident; 75 people were rescued and about 112 were found dead. The report further added that illegal migration as well as the inherent loss of lives have become an annual affair as thousands of Africans under extremely hazardous conditions try “to reach Yemen in order to escape conflict ridden situations and poor economic prospects at home.”
On the global scene, Syria has been on the news lately for losing uncountable number of lives of citizens trying to migrate (illegally) to Europe. Thus the issue of migrating in this manner is not restricted to Africa alone; it happens when there is a dire need to change one’s location at all cost and for the better. However, the illegality is still a pestering concern. Worse still, the ugly ordeal that it entails, the harshness is not just in the course of migration but also the hard-knock life that awaits migrants; most times it’s just not worth it.
What causes this? Well we can start from poor governance, economy/ wealth distribution, conflicts, survival instincts, and a perfect blend of frustration and desperation. Illegal migration through African shores has become a necessary evil for some Africans who have by far surpassed their elastic limit. Would have stuck to the gospel of contentment, but the truth is that before anyone takes this risky adventure, it means the only option there is, is to take the extremely life threatening chance of illegal migration.
Past experiences have revealed that migrants who were lucky enough to make it to Yemen unfortunately become victims of human trafficking, smuggling and commercial prostitution for the females. They are greatly tortured and abused.
“For decades, migrants from Africa have passed through Yemen to seek work in Saudi Arabia. Since 2010, more than 337,000 migrants and refugees have landed on Yemen’s coastline from the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden. Their numbers rose significantly, and then dipped in July 2013, most likely due to a Saudi crackdown on undocumented migrant workers, only to rise again in March 2014. A multi-million-dollar trafficking and extortion racket has developed in Yemen based on the migrants’ passage.”- Human Right’s Watch
Did you know that trafficking and smuggling make up about 80 percent of the Yemen’s economy? African illegal migrants are grossly abused up to the point that they become slaves, tortured and used as baits to extort money from “migrants’ relatives and friends in Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia.” From all ramification, illegal migration is indeed an issue worth looking into in Africa.