A party of 82 Nigerian children returned to Lagos yesterday (Monday, November the 9th) after two years in the Ivory Coast.
SV Gowon & party across tarmac (2 shots)
LV Children down steps of aircraft
Sv Children being carried & walking down steps (5 shots)
SCU Gowon speaking to children
SCU Officer carries child across taram?
SV & CU Children with Red Cross workers across tarmac (3 shots)
GV People at edge of tarmac
SV & CU Gowon speaks to children (4 shots)
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 8: GOWON: "After how many years, about two years, away from home? I can assure you that we'll welcome you back with all our hearts with all our love. I want to assure you that you are back home, there's nothing that's going to happen to you. You are Nigerians."
Initials JB/PN/SGM/0348 JB/PN/SGM/0412
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: A party of 82 Nigerian children returned to Lagos yesterday (Monday, November the 9th) after two years in the Ivory Coast. The children are the first to return of more than 4,000 Ibos evacuated from the country during the civil war. Nearly 1,000 of them went to the Ivory Coast where they were cared for by the Red Cross.
The Nigerian Head of State, General Gowon, was at the airport to greet the children as they stepped down form the aircraft. The aeroplane, a DC 6 had been specially loaned by President Diori of Niger to fly the children home.
The children were all neatly dressed and looked fit but tired after their flight. General Gowon talked and joked with many of them.
Later the children flew on the Port Harcourt from where they will go into reception centres. Most of the evacuated children are from the East Central State and will return there, but officials do not know how many are now orphans.
Eight more flights are scheduled to bring the remaining 800 children from the Ivory Coast. No airlift has yet been planned for the 3,500 children in Gabon, but authorities expect them to return by Christmas.