A Nigerian living in Libya’s capital city, Tripoli, Abubakar Lawal Ja’afar, has said Libyan indegenes are above indulging in slave trading and human trafficking of Blacks against the circulated pictures and videos.
Mr Ja’afar, in an interview with BBC Hausa Service on Thursday, said Libyans are wealthy people whose concerns have far gone beyond the slave acts and human torture of Blacks.
This revelation is coming as the Director General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP, Julie Okah-Donli, said more than 25,000 Nigerians have been held in slave and sex camps in Libya.
But Ja’afar attributed any detained Black to the lack of proper papers or their attempt at crossing to Italy illegally.
“As I speak with you, I live in Libya. It is not true that Blacks are sold as slaves because these people are wealthy far beyond any imagination. They are above this slavery.
“This act must have been perpetrated by some bad eggs amongst Libyans, of which the authorities are yet to identify. And as soon they are identified, they would be fished out and dealt with,” he said.
He said “those seen to have been arrested are illegal immigrants attempting to enter Italy. They are the ones apprehended, which the Nigerian government used to send planes for their repatriation.
“I have all the freedom to walk anywhere in Libya as long as I hold my papers. I swear they even give us lifts in their private cars without asking a single penny.
“If you see anybody being arrested in their roadblocks, it is because they don’t have proper papers, which is why they suspect are illegal immigrants attempting to enter Ital, and they detain them there from.”
Asked on whether they have any fear regarding their safety in the country, the Nigerian said their only concern now is the skyrocketing dollar exchange.
“Our only fear as Blacks in Libya is the hike in dollar exchange rate, not the gory pictures and videos being circulated.
“Two years ago, we used to exchange dollar with 1 dinnar plus Nus. But it now costs us 9 – 10 dinnar per dollar, equivalent to N1,000 per dinnar.
“And the parallel governments in Libya – one here in Tripoli and the other in Bengazi are what causes this exchange rate hike. That is why we pray they have a single government and once that is achieved, the exchange rate will crash,” he said.