The Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, has stated that the UAE is threatening a visa suspension due to airline funds being held in Nigeria.
It should be noted that the Gulf country has apparently stopped giving visas to Nigerians in recent weeks.
The CBN governor stated that Nigeria has favoured foreign airlines in the allocation of foreign currency throughout the years, and that instead of bearing with the country, some countries are threatening to ban Nigerians.
“You will either cancel your visa to Nigerians or state that you will not fly again because your money are frozen.”
“We utilized our discretion to allocate $265 million dollars to international airlines, split evenly between spot and forward flights.” We did $110 million right away and the remainder in 60 days.
“On that day, we allocated $32 million to IATA through UBA.” Qatar Airways, $22.8 million from Standard Chartered, Emirates, $19.6 million from Access Bank, British Airways, $5.5 million from GTB, Virgin Atlantic, and $4.8 million from Zenith, among others,” he stated.
In response, Rivers State legislator Boma Goodhead said Nigeria had no reason to be concerned about the visa suspension. She added that Nigeria benefits the UAE more.
She claimed that if the UAE is allowed to stay for a year without receiving tourists from Nigeria, they will reconsider.
Emirates Manager for Nigeria, Paulos Legesse, stated that the airline is unaware of the visa prohibition; however, the airline would halt operations in Nigeria on October 28 due to the country’s failure to reclaim its funds.