A Nigerian student who was deported by the Turkish government on Monday night says he was treated like a terrorist, detained and interrogated before he was finally sent back on a plane to Nigeria.
Speaking in an exclusive chat with TheCable News through a live chat while in transit, a Nigerian student who was deported by the Turkish government, on Monday night, narrated his experience, saying he was treated like a terrorist, detained and interrogated before he was finally sent on a plane to Nigeria.
The Electrical Engineering undergraduate of the University of Fatih, said Turkish officials found nothing incriminating on him but denied him entry all the same. “Well, right now, I’m inside the flight commencing my first leg of my return journey back to Abuja. After being marshalled in like Shekau that they just caught,” he said.
HOW IT STARTED
“So, I came back, with an open mind considering since I was back in the country, I’ve been hearing reports about how returning students were being treated. But I felt, okay here I am, as innocent as ever, supposed to even have graduated with my set this year but for minor visa complications in that past that made me miss a semester.
“I handed my travel documents to the officer at the passport control desk. I gave him the documents, he looked that them, then asked me for my father’s name. I gave him. I didn’t think anything about it, then I saw him hysterically punching numbers in a cell phone and giving orders to people; that was when I starting getting worried.
“I still kept quiet all these while, though. Still managing to smile, until suddenly two armed policemen came next to me and demanded I follow them. I complied, still smiling even though they all were giving me hostile looks and had no kind emotions either of their faces. Anyways, they ushered me to a waiting area just close to the passport control area. Here, they made me wait for about 10 minutes; I could see them photocopying my passport, talking to one another in hurried sentences and what not. It all seemed frantic.
“There were also a couple other people there as well, most of them crying. I remember a young girl, probably a student as well, pouring her heart out. And a couple as well, both husband and wife really sobbing. I assumed they were just informed of their deportation. And from them on, I knew I probably might follow suit.”
TREATED LIKE A CRIMINAL
“Then two men, came up to me. Plain clothes this time. Each holding a pistol. Drawn though.
“Anyways, they took me to the little room still in the same waiting area. In front of the door was written, ‘Police’. I reckoned I was going to get interrogated. I laughed in my mind, see me, who just about 30 minutes ago I was just another innocent student returning to school, now I’m being treated like a criminal.
“They then asked me what I was coming to Turkey to do, I said school, like duh, it says that in my residence permit. Anyways, they then asked me my university. I told them the name of the university I’ve already been transferred to. Then they rudely interrupted and asked if I was in that university because my university was part of those closed. I answered truthfully, because you know, they already probably know all of this, so I better not lie.
“Then they asked if I knew an organisation called Cemmat owned by my university and that it’s a terrorist organisation; that this was why it was closed. I answered that I know of the owners
“And then they said, not even asking. They called me a Cemmat member, and that I’m probably part of their terrorist team. I just smiled. And I calmly denied all they just accused me off.
“They didn’t talk again. They now proceeded to searching my bag. That’s when I now spoke up saying that how can I even be a part of the so-called terrorists. That how? That for starters, I’m a believing Christian and have been my whole life. That all their accusations are just absurd.
“They now laughed and said that who told me that Christians aren’t included in his terrorist ring and that I could be lying for all they cared. That how can they know I’m saying the truth. I said they can call any random person from my contact list and ask, and that they could even ask my girlfriend who was in the arrival hall waiting for me.
“They brushed aside what I said, and started checking my bags, inside the round my two Bibles and my big journal on biblical explanations. I then asked if that did not prove that I was who I said I was?”
BACK TO DUBAI
Another police officer in mufti now came in and asked me to follow him. He then took me to a place, and did a lot of photocopying of my documents.
“Afterwards, he said I should follow him, he’s probably done then. I followed and that’s when I realised we’re heading to the transfer area. I now asked: Am I getting deported? He just replied that they are sending me back to Dubai.”
“Before I could say anything, I was handed to two hefty armed plain clothes.
”That’s when I know asked again, Dubai, that I was just transiting through Dubai. That is they want to deport me they should have the decency to take me back to my country
”Anyways, these two hefty men now took my back to the aircraft I had just disembarked not too long ago. And they now handed me over to the lead flight attendant and they put my documents in a folder and said they had confiscated my documents that, when we get to Dubai, they will hand me over to ground staff who will then decide what to do with me.
”The flight attendant while escorting me to my prison seat, now told me that in Dubai, they try and make sure I get into a flight going to Abuja.
”I just thanked him and took my prison seat. And that’s where I am still seated as I talk to you now. And we are currently about 1 hour away from Dubai. That’s my story.”