War: The 364 Nigerian evacuees from crisis-ridden Sudan, who arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on Wednesday, May 3, have narrated their ordeals and prayed that Nigeria never witnesses war.
Halliru Bello, one of the evacuated students in a chat with Daily Trust, prayed that Nigeria never experiences war as it could crumble the citizens and the nation itself.
Politics Nigeria gathered that Bello revealed that as a medical student at the International University of Africa, Sudan, his academic programme had been put on hold because of the war that suddenly broke out in the country.
According to him:
“It started at 11am when we started hearing gunshots and after three days, we started experiencing airstrikes and missiles.
“The next thing we were told was not to leave our homes. No access to the market to buy food and other things,” Bello said.
“Our experience was a very terrible one, we don’t pray for anyone ever to experience it. If you were not there, you won’t understand what we experienced.
“May Nigeria do all it takes never to experience war. Academic activities of students would be disrupted suddenly, with no access to food and basic amenities, no movement and you may die in the process when you’re hit by a bullet or missile,” he said.
According to him, missiles and airstrikes were suddenly hitting everywhere and the whole activities in Khartoum shut down.
Bello said after three days, the government of Sudan placed an order for other countries to evacuate their citizens, hence, it was at that point Nigerians in Sudan started making their way to the border between Sudan and Egypt.
He said although the experience was terrifying and frustrating, the Nigerian government made provision for their feeding.
Another student, Aisha Sumaila, who was a nursing student at the International University of Africa in Sudan, said they suffered at the border because the Egyptian officers did not allow them access to the country.
She said the intervention of the Nigerian government eventually made it possible for them to gain access to Egypt.
A footballer and businessman, Steven Chidera Wihioka, said it was a 16-hour journey from Khartoum to Egypt and when they finally arrived at the border, the Egypt officials refused them access, hence they slept outside at the border for eight days because they had nowhere to sleep.
He said there were citizens from other countries who were all trying to leave Khartoum for Egypt.