Do you support Buhari’s visa-on-arrival policy for Africans?

Ayodele Latona

Ayodele Latona
Lagos

There is nothing progressive about this policy as it is not well thought out. Firstly, such a visa-on-arrival policy that portends to open up Nigeria to the rest of Africa that brings no reciprocity to Nigerians with respect to Nigerians enjoying the same visa-on-arrival to all of these other African countries (excluding the ECOWAS treaty and bilateral visa waiver agreements) is mere playing to the gallery. Secondly, the incredible corrupt nature of our systems will make these immigration policy a grave mistake in the making. A new structure that will birth new patterns of corruption has just been established and given legitimisation. We have not been able to wholly and properly account for foreign visitors arriving in the country through the main entry points. How then will we be able to account for all those who will not be coming into the country through our airports. Even the most immigrant-friendly nations of the world have not attempted to open up their countries in such an unprecedented way without setting out exceptions. Thirdly, with the reality of extremism and terrorism, I do not think it is right for the President to come up with such policy that will definitely be a recipe of disaster. Of course, one might argue that the prerogative to grant entry by the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) will help to sort out who comes in and who is kept out, but then Nigeria as we know it is not a country that is diligent in its duties and responsibilities. I feel this is not the best and it should not be approved.

Abimbola Fayomi

Bimbo Fayomi
Festac, Lagos

I am not in support because the population census exercise is around the corner. Moreover, Nigerian security is not safe. For example, the Boko Haram insurgency, herdsmen and banditry has been blamed on troops from Cameroon, Chad and other neighbouring countries in the past when we had a closed immigrant policy, then imagine when it is opened. Our borders are porous. If the President is saying that it will improve tourism and economy, government should fortify our land borders and formalize entry into Nigeria.

 

 

 

 

 

Ezike Uba
Enugu

I am surprised at the lack of rigor with which government business is conducted and no wonder the abysmally poor results. For example we are not told what Nigeria gets in return for this gesture. Is it total open border or visa on arrival they are contemplating? For the records, the Nigerian passport ranks no 95 in the world with visa free or visa on arrival access to 46 countries with 28 of them in Africa that has 54 countries or so. So is this gesture helping us? The highest rank of the Nigerian passport in recent years was in 2012 when it was no 87. Mind you, Ghana is number 77 now with visa free access to 65 destinations. From 2015 to date the rank has been 95,92,91,94 and 95 on a yearly basis. I expect the improvement in the passport ranking to be a key metric in measuring how well the foreign affairs is doing. For me, I am not in support of this policy. It is a pity our country is not moving forward at all and our leaders are not helping matters, rather they are making it worse.

 

 

 

Chuks Obuh

Chuks Obuh
Delta

No. That decision is not right now. We don’t have what it takes to control that, and we are already many in Nigeria, they will nationalize without the due process and this may be the end of Nigeria. Nigeria will harbour different criminals who will use our land to perpetrate their criminal acts. Government should reconsider this decision before it becomes uncontrollable. Other Countries won’t allow this, for security reasons. The government should always think about the safety of the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tega Grace

Tega Grace

This is not a good one, with the current issues we are facing concerning terrorists and bandits; this means anyone from Niger or Cameroon can get a Nigerian citizenship easily. We need to know the number of foreigners and monitor their activities. We are like 200 million in population and we can’t even pay 30k monthly salary. There is need for more hospitals, good road networks, and employment. The President is not seeing to that, rather he is giving out a law that I think should be (the) least of our problems.

 

 

 

 

 

Ngozi Magdalene Uche

Ngozi Magdalene Uche
Ogba, Lagos

What an irony. This regime is granting freedom of movement for other Africans into the country, yet our own citizens don’t have the freedom to move within the country. Human rights are being denied, rule of law thrown to the gutters. This is not a good one and the National Assembly should not grant this because it will be (a) disaster for Nigeria.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Funmi Ajibade

Funmi Ajibade
Lagos

I am in support of the policy because it would engender transparent visa processing while making it easier to monitor foreigners in the country and thus boost national security. A lot of countries practise transparent system and that is what Nigeria is trying to imbibe now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bose Joseph

Bose Joseph

With the level of corruption in Nigeria Immigration Service and Nigeria Customs Service, any terrorist can bribe his way in. The stringent checks will only be for those who cannot afford the price. Terrorists from Somalia, Libya, Algeria etc will now make Nigeria a hiding place. This is not a good idea.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gafar Kasunmu

Gafar Kasunmu
Ilorin

I would say this is not the right thing to do in view of all the security challenges and economic hardships facing Nigeria? Nigeria does not have the social infrastructure to support such an influx and it does not appear as if any proper prior preparations have been made to deal with this new policy declaration by President Buhari. The government closed the borders for security and economic reasons, why this strange move?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Idowu Babareke

This policy is of no good to Nigeria and I must say we are the problem of ourselves. The visa-on-arrival will be for who? I know some African countries like Ghana, South African, Kenya, Angola and so on will not want to leave their country which is better than ours. May be countries like Mali, Guinea, Sudan, Niger, Chad, Cameroon along with a full compliment of the disease stricken suffering from AIDS and Ebola. It will be an invasion and even Liberia, Senegal and the Congo alone will overwhelm us. They won’t only come with diseases but also with arms and ammunitions and before we know it, our country Nigeria will be replaced by a rampaging, viciously violent, killing crew.

 

 

 

Mary Adesuyi

Mary Adesuyi
Lagos

It is not a good one at all for a country fighting terrorists believed to be from neighbouring countries. Nigeria is fast losing it. The President gave order to close the boarders and then now visa-on-arrival to commence January 2020 which is just two weeks away and all land borders remain closed. Before the visa was in place, Nigeria is already littered with immigrants and most of them terrorists. Now they are free to come in and at will. I must say this policy is dangerous and bad. This is not the time at all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deola Adeleye

Deola Adeleye
Lagos

I am not in support of this policy because it has no economic values and no cultural advantages. In fact, Nigeria will start losing the little income from visa fees. But come to think of it, some African countries are chasing Nigerians out of their country while we are welcoming them with open arms. This is a disaster that should not be encouraged at all. Also, why should the President be in a position to impose such without any input whatsoever from the legislature?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uche Kekeche

Uche Kekeche
Imo

This is a yes and a no for me because all Africans can enter Nigeria without a visa. Great news for African integration they said but how does this affect Nigerians? Are Nigerians also free to enter these African countries without a visa? If the answer is no, then this gesture from Nigeria is a wrong one and makes foolish the tenets of international relations that advocate reciprocity in this kind of situation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tobi Adebiyi

Tobi Adebiyi
Lagos

I foresee a bad omen come 2020 if this policy is approved. Nigeria must never forget that one of the reasons it closed its borders was to reduce influx of villains who might come into Nigeria to cause trouble and one would not be surprised to hear a mass influx of terrorists who would use this window of opportunity to flood Nigeria; and before one knows it, the whole of Nigeria would become a war zone, only comparable to what had happened in Syria and other parts of the Middle East. I must say caution should be our watchword in a situation of this kind.

 

 

 

 

Imam Bashir

Imam Bashir
Kwara

My position on this is that it should be debated in the National Assembly. Allowing everyone to come in will have far-reaching consequences as it will affect the political and socio-economic situation in the country. Can our economy sustain it? Do we have enough land to sustain us? Will it not be a way to rig elections in future? It’s a far-reaching decision the President ought to allow Nigerians discuss before announcement outside the shores of the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fudi Yahaya

Fudi Yahaya
Kaduna

This policy is not coming at the right time because it stands the risk of increasing unemployment in the country as it allows migrants from poorer countries to sneak into the country to work and is going to cost us problems that we will come to regret later.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kelly Onyenenue

Kelly Onyenenue
Ikeja

The timing of the policy is wrong, considering the security situation in the country. All the countries like UAE, Ethiopia, Kenya, Morocco and Rwanda, which have implemented visa-on-arrival policy have tied it towards certain targets geared towards improving the lives of their citizens. We need to always do critical thinking in our country rather than wishing for things. I must say that Nigeria doesn’t have the technical infrastructure to detect if someone comes in and disappears. For this policy to be effective, we need things to be properly put in place. I feel the policy should not be implemented because it will be a big problem for us in the future especially when it comes to security.