April 9, 2013 – Actress Joke Silva: “Africans See Abroad As Streets Paved With Gold”
In this recent interview culled from The Sun, veteran Nollywood actress Joke Silva, the wife of actor Olu Jacobs said a major problem is that Africans tend to see Europe as a place where the streets are paved with gold and so Nigerian youths, plagued by poverty and deprivation will do anything under the sun to make it to Europe.
“In Africa, we tend to think that Europe is the place where the streets are paved with gold but that’s not the case. I was at a programme recently and I said ‘look, I was in the United States, on Rodeo Drive where you have all the rich people. Right there I saw people, white people sleeping on the streets.
“So, you see, there are so many poor people all over the world. What we are trying to say is that rather than leave your country, why don’t you just find an alternative? Whatever you think the other country has, come and develop it in your country. All over the world, people are facing challenges whether we like it or not. If we want things to be better for our country, let’s stay here and fight it collectively. We need to fight for what we need for our country. We don’t have to be violent about it. There are many options that will work for civil society. Going outside of this country illegally is not an option.
“The reason people are trafficked is either for their organs or to work as sex slaves and most times people fall victims because of the lies that they are told. Most times, these people are deceived by madams who pose as business women. They come back from probably Italy, build a couple of houses and say ‘I can take so many people with me and they will make a lot of money. They will come back and do the same thing I am doing with money’, and young people are misled.”
Are you planning to travel out of the country illegally? Are you seeking greener pastures in the Europe at all cost? Joke has a warning for you. Hear her: “When these people go, they never make enough money to come back. They are turned into sex slaves as soon as they arrive. Back in Nigeria, they are made to go to shrines to swear to fake gods. They are vulnerable and manipulated. If they are lucky they get to the other side but many die before that.”
[Interview by Tony Ogaga Erhariefe, The Sun News]