Saturday, 2 November 2013

UK May Suspend £3,000 Visa Bound

United Kingdom may have  suspended the proposed plan to impose £3,000 on first time visitors from Nigeria.
It could not be confirmed if it has also suspended the policy in five other Commonwealth countries considered to be source of “high risk” tourists to the UK.
The countries where the country had in June proposed to implement the plan starting from November are Nigeria, India, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
An official who spoke on condition of anonymity with our correspondent on Friday said there had been no official communication from the home country on the visa bond which almost generated a diplomatic row between UK on one hand and the affected countries on the other hand.

He said, “We have not received any directive on the visa bond. This is an issue the two countries (Nigeria and UK) have approached through diplomacy.
“The policy cannot be implemented now because there is no official communication on it.”
A visit by our correspondent to VFS Global, the visa application and collection Centre for UK, France, Belgium, and a few other European countries as well as South Africa revealed that the policy did not begin as earlier announced by the UK.
VFS Global located on No 38, Lobito crescent, off Adetokunbo Ademola Street, Wuse II, Abuja, was beehive of activities on Friday.
Visa applicants and those that went to collect their visa were trooping in and out of the office after due clearance from the security men.
A number of the applicants said no when asked if they were requested to issue any financial bond.
“A businessman who did not identify himself said, “I have just submitted my documents, nobody asked me to pay any visa bond”.
 There is a payment Centre at the VFS Global where all required payment is done. But none of the people that submitted their documents or that came for collection was asked to make a deposit.
When asked why nobody was asked to make a deposit, an official at the Centre said, “We have been warned not to speak about it at all. There has been no communication to that effect. The standing instruction is that we should not talk about it at all”.
Another official close to the commission said, “Even at the time the information leaked, the policy was only muted; there was no conclusion on it. Up till now, there is no conclusion on the implementation”.
Inquiry to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also showed that there had been no official communication between Nigeria and the UK.
The ministry’s spokesman, Ogbole Amedu Ode said he was not aware of any official decision from the UK to implement the policy after Nigeria had protested against it.
He said, “I am not aware. We have a mission in UK, if there is any development, the information will come from there. To the best of my knowledge, I am not aware.”

Source: PunchNG

No comments:

Post a Comment