FG: Nigerians travel to Ethiopia on tourist visas – but refuse to return

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The federal government says Nigerians travel to Ethiopia on tourist visas but refuse to return even after their visas expire.

The government said so Thursday in a statement signed by Francisca Omayuli, spokeswoman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The federal government has described this behavior as an abuse of Ethiopia’s visa policy, with some of these Nigerians engaging in unhealthy activities.

“…the Nigerian government has taken note of the concern expressed by the Ethiopian authorities over the abuse of the country’s visa policy by some Nigerians who enter the country on tourist visas and remain there even after the expiry of their visas, engaging in unhealthy activities,” the statement said. bed.

“The activities of these few elements not only tarnish the image of the country, but limit opportunities for well-meaning Nigerians outside the country. These people are urged to turn a new page and take advantage of the opportunity offered by Ethiopian national security agencies to participate in the ongoing registration of undocumented migrants in order to avoid unpleasant situations.

The federal government’s statement came in the context of the Ethiopian government’s recent decision to visas on arrival abolished for Nigerians.

This development meant that travelers had to obtain their visa from the Ethiopian Embassy in Abuja before embarking on any trip to the country.

The visa policy review had raised dust because the United Arab Emirates (UAE) had imposed travel restrictions on Nigerians; but more so, because the Ethiopian flag carrier was recently named the lead investor in Nigeria Air – the country’s flag carrier – with a 49% stake.

But speaking further on the matter, the federal government said the Ethiopian government took the decision due to security concerns and growing political tensions in the East African nation.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria wishes to inform the general public that the Federal Government of Ethiopia has suspended the issuance of “visas on arrival” to non-resident aliens at all entry points into the country, for security reasons. and current political situation in that country. The suspension applies to nationals of all countries holding standard passports, who are seeking to enter Ethiopia and are not specifically targeting Nigerians as has been reported in some quarters,” the statement continues. communicated.

“The Ethiopian authorities explained that the measure aims at better border control of the movement of people towards Ethiopia in view of the ongoing armed conflict in the north of the country. The measure would be temporary, pending the improvement of the security situation in the country and not a replacement of Ethiopia’s open visa policy.

“Therefore, Nigerians holding standard passports intending to travel to Ethiopia are advised by this notification to obtain appropriate entry visas from the Ethiopian Embassy or electronic visa (e-visa) through the country’s Immigration and Citizenship Service (ICS) portal at wwwteyisa.goytet In addition, those transiting through Bole International Airport, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to other destinations or who have l intending to stop briefly would need a valid entry visa to allow them access to hotel facilities in the city or would be forced to stay at the airport while waiting for their onward flight.

“The new temporary visa restriction measure came into effect on September 29, 2022. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will liaise with the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and relevant airlines to ensure that future Nigerian travelers en route to Ethiopia are well sensitized.

“The general public is encouraged to be aware of the new visa regime of the Ethiopian Federal Government and be guided accordingly.”

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