178 returnees from S’Africa to arrive Lagos tonight, Foreign Affairs Ministry says

By Shola Abayomi.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has revealed that 178 Nigerians are already on their way back to the country from South Africa.

According to the ministry, the returnees are expected to arrive at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos at 11:15 pm tonight.

The chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), Abike Dabiri-Erewa, explained that the flight which was scheduled to leave at 9:10 am, was delayed for about seven hours by the South African immigration as a result of expired documents from some Nigerian nationals.

She added that some Nigerians were prevented from boarding the aircraft as they could not provide travel documents for their children.

The foreign affairs ministry had earlier disclosed that the first batch of 84 Nigerians to be evacuated from South Africa were expected to arrive in Nigeria at 2pm local time today, noting that although 313 Nigerians were confirmed as those to form the first batch of evacuees, only 84 of them were cleared to embark on the flight to Nigeria.

The ministry also stated that 640 Nigerians have indicated willingness to be repatriated from South Africa, adding that the second batch of evacuees would depart Johannesburg for Nigeria on Friday.

Speaking on the Federal Government’s plan for the returnees, the NIDCOM chairman said they would be given sim cards and airtime that would last almost two months to help them stay in touch with their families.

She added that, “The Bank of Industry will also be here to offer some entrepreneurship programme and some support to start a small business and there would be some stipends for transportation to take you home and we will profile them and for those who want to get any training, they will decide what kind of training they want to do and the Bank of Industry will be there to provide it.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *