Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) has confirmed that 40 Nigerians were recently deported from the United Kingdom and Australia.
This is the second deportation in one month. Spokesman of the Immigration, Mr. Ekpedeme King, confirmed the deportation and said the Service was still waiting for more details from Lagos.
The deportees were accused of committing immigration offences, which were not specified by the deporting countries. But it was gathered that many of them were sent packing from their host countries for overstaying their visas and other immigration offences.
The deportees arrived at the hajj camp area of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) at 7:25a.m. with chartered aircraft and Air Seychelles flight. The chartered flight with registration number ZTA-4741 brought in 36 Nigerians comprising 29 males and seven females, while Air Seychelles with registration number SND-1 bought in four males into the country.
Although, most of them looked frustrated and disappointed, and wouldn’t speak with reporters, they were received by various agencies such as NIS that checked their identities to ascertain their nationalities, police, National Agency for Protection and Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and other relevant stakeholders.
It will be recalled that last year, more than 40 Nigerians were similarly deported from UK for what the United Kingdom government called immigration offences. Last month (April), 48 Nigerians were jointly deported by UK and Swiss governments for residing in their countries illegally.
However, the Nigerian government has concluded plans to sign visa free pacts with a bloc of eight African countries to promote economic partnership on the continent. Announcing this in Abuja on Tuesday at a news conference to mark one year of President Mohammadu Buhari’s Administration, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr Geoffrey Onyeama said trading among African countries had been very low and that with this new idea by the President, it is expected that there will be upsurge in economic activities among African countries.