Wednesday, 31 July 2013

FG responds to UK's £3, 000 visa bond

The Federal Government on Tuesday has said they will retaliate action  against  British citizens if bond is imposed on visitors from Nigeria and five other Commonwealth countries especially as they have formally informed by the UK Government. 
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Olugbenga Ashiru,  had at a meeting with the British High Commissioner, Andrew Pocock, conveyed the desire of Nigeria to retaliate the policy.  The spokesperson for the ministry , Ogbole Ode, said  in a statement;

“Media reports in Nigeria on Monday,  July 29, 2013, indicated that the United Kingdom  Government will begin to implement from November, 2013, the £3,000  cash bond  for first-time visa applicants from Nigeria, and five other Commonwealth countries. The other countries are India, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. These media reports themselves were quoting the Financial Times of London.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has yet to receive any official communication on the final decision of the UK government on this matter. The Federal Government has already conveyed its objection to the bond payment to the UK government. 
“If and when a communication to that effect is received, the Federal Government  will take appropriate steps to reflect its national interest. ”

When contacted, the spokesman for the British High Commission in Abuja, Rob Fitzpatrick, said, 

 “No final decision has been made” on the  controversial policy.As British Prime Minister David Cameron has said,  we want the brightest and the best to help create the jobs and growth that will enable Britain to compete in the global race. So, for example, if you are an overseas businessman seeking to invest and trade with world class businesses, one of the thousands of legitimate students keen to study at our first-class universities or a tourist visiting our world class attractions, be in no doubt: Britain is open for business.”

Meanwhile, apart from keeping certain people out of the UK by this bond, they are trying to get illegal immigrants out of Britain as two trucks, each displaying a large  poster with a number for migrants to send  text  messages if they desired  to return to their countries , were  seen in six London for a week. Posters, leaflets and advertisements in   newspapers  would  be used to further promote the campaign, a pilot scheme by the interior ministry. a campaign  advising  illegal immigrants to “go home or face arrest.”
But  Prime Minister David  Cameron’s spokesman defended the  campaign,   saying it was  clear  that it was  “already working”  as some  illegal immigrants  had  voluntarily agreed to leave  the UK.

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