IRREGULAR MIGRATION UNIT
The Irregular Migration Unit of The Gambia Immigration Department was established in 2008 with the aim of managing the general irregular migration situation of The Gambia. The establishment of the unit was particularly necessitated by the unprecedented rise in the number of Gambian irregular migrants that venture in to the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea in their quest to enter Europe. This adventure the youth are frequently undertaking has left untold consequences as many of them have perished in the Desert and the Mediterranean Sea in recent years.
The Gambia Immigration Department as the migration agency of the Government feels the situation cannot go unabated thus the establishment of the Irregular Migration Unit.
The main objective of the Unit is to curb Irregular Migration through gathering and dissemination of information on migration and as well as reinforce the borders to deter Irregular Migrants from undertaking such perilous journeys. Campaign tools used by the unit in sensitization include:
Television discussion and talk shows
Lectures in school campuses
Outreach programmes with community and local authorities
Guidance and counseling sessions for returnees and youth at risk.
The unit also shares data with other stakeholders for policy planning , research and statistic.
One of the major Success story registered by the unit is the establishment of the Irregular Migration Monitoring Centre in the coastal town of Tanjeh. The centre was constructed with financial help from The Spanish Ministry of Interior. It was established in 2010 for the implementation of interagency cooperation and coordination for the purpose of monitoring the Irregular Migration trends, Illicit Drugs and Human Trafficking along the coast lines. The centre equally serves as a Guidance and Counseling centre for repatriated and deported Gambians from abroad and also vulnerable youth. It is manned by trained Immigration officers in the field of guidance and counseling.