Why we haven’t evacuated some Nigerians from India – FG

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The Federal Government has explained that it is yet to evacuate some Nigerians from India because those left behind did not meet evacuation requirements set by the Foreigner Regional Registration Offices in their host country.

This was made known in a statement issued on Saturday by the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Francisca Omayuli, noting that the affected persons had no record of entry into India while some gained entry with another passport other than Nigerian passport.

The Nigerian News gathered that the Federal Government had evacuated 191 Nigerians comprising 152 males, 43 females and an infant from India on a special flight on Friday.

Those evacuated were mainly Nigerians who had been in the custody of the Indian authorities, awaiting deportation for reasons such as overstay and completion of various prison terms.

The government, however, gave assurance that it would make proper arrangements for their evacuation.

The statement said “The attention of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been drawn to a video going round in social media, showing some stranded Nigerians at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi, India. The said Nigerians were purportedly refused evacuation to Nigeria on Friday, December 16, 2022.”

“This information is inaccurate, misleading and not well intended. The Federal Government of Nigeria on Friday, December 16, 2022, provided a chartered flight to evacuate Nigerians who had been in the custody of the Indian authorities, awaiting deportation for reasons such as overstay and completion of various prison terms.”

“However, some other persons who had not gone through the required procedure for repatriation showed up at the airport on the day of the flight to request evacuation. Following the intervention of the Nigerian High Commission and officials handling the evacuation exercise, several of this category of persons who met the conditions for repatriation were cleared and accommodated on the flight.”

“Consequently, a total of 191 Nigerians were evacuated from India on the special flight, excluding five officials. This number comprised 152 males, 43 females and an infant.”

“However, a few other Nigerians could not make the evacuation flight due to their inability to meet the required conditions set by the Foreigner Regional Registration Offices of the Indian Bureau of Immigration, for reasons such as, no records of entry into India; children with proxy parents; those who entered India with passports other than Nigerian passports, presentation of undocumented forms; and inability to file the application form for exit permit.”

She added that the Nigerian High Commission in India had appealed to those who could not make the evacuation list to exercise patience and understanding, while efforts were being made to ensure that all affected Nigerians were accommodated in the next batch of the evacuation exercise.

The ministry further urged Nigerians to have adequate knowledge of the country they were going to.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, therefore, wishes to emphasise the imperative to be knowledgeable about the entry and exit procedures of the country being visited so as to be well guided to avoid unpleasant consequences”.

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