Nigerians disappear from Goa streets

PTI, PANAJI | 01 November 2013 18:30 IST

Nigerians have disappeared from the streets of Goa's Parra village, an area dominated by them, a day after 53 nationals from the African country were detained for unruly protest.

After the protest, which saw them blocking Mapusa-Panaji Highway following the murder of a fellow countryman, Goa authorities have decided to crack down on Nigerians staying without proper documents. The murder has been linked to drug trade rivalry.

Locals said Nigerians had become a nuisance. "They sleep during the day and after the sunset take to the streets riding bikes recklessly. They venture out in groups disobeying traffic rules. They rule the street entire night," Delilah Lobo, woman Sarpanch of Parra, told PTI today.

The village is home to almost 30 per cent of the Nigerians living in the tourist state. Panchayat records show that nearly 30 houses have been rented out to them.

"They pay advance rent for six months and usually disappear after midnight," she said.

The Nigerians usually travel in groups and no one knows their source of income, said Lobo, whose husband is the local MLA and President of North Goa BJP.

After yesterday's incident, no Nigerians were seen zooming past on their two-wheelers. The police action saw several Nigerians running helter-skelter through paddy fields.

"They will return once the situation calms down," said a coconut vendor in Parra market.

A bar and restaurant, run by a local in partnership with a Nigerian, had become a centre of activity in the village for these foreigners.

More than 100 Nigerians were regularly seen at the restaurant, dining and drinking the entire night amidst loud music, Lobo said, adding "there was no police action.

Ani Kester Ible, the Nigerian who runs this property along with a local woman, Santa Catarina D'Souza, said the restaurant was famous for serving African dishes.

After the incident, the restaurant has become a bone of contention with local Panchayat issuing a show-cause notice to the eatery.

"I don't know who all are involved in drug trade. We just serve food. It is for the police to crack down on the drug trades" said Ible. is now on Telegram & also Youtube. Kindly subscribe for free & remain updated.

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By High Commission of India in Nigeria

"India is currently Nigeria’s second largest trading partner. With a population of 168 million and considerable revenue from oil exports, Nigeria is the largest trading partner of India in Africa. Nigeria is also the largest market in Africa for Indian exports. A large number of Indian companies have footprints in Nigeria, which have made substantial investments in Nigeria. Bilateral annual trade turnover was over US$ 17.3 billion in 2011-12 registering the growth of over 34%. During 2012-13, our exports further grew by 1.33% even though the bilateral trade slightly declined to $ 16.8 billion. ...

"... Total Indian community in Nigeria is estimated to be 35,000 persons. Out of these about 25,000 are Indian nationals and about 10,000 are thought to be foreign passport holders. In general, Indians in Nigeria are well off and enjoy largely non-controversial existence. The community runs a CBSE affiliated Indian Language School in Lagos with over 2,000 students. It also has two temples in Lagos and a number of cultural and ethnic associations, most prominent of which is Indian Cultural Association. ...

- Akhabue, Federal Republic of Nigeria | 02 nd November 2013 21:46


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