Tuesday, November 24, 2020

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Nigeria working with US to turn around visa restrictions – Buhari

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THE President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Thursday said Nigeria was making progress in its efforts to ensure the reversal of the United States suspension of the issuance of “immigrant visas” to Nigerian passport holders.

His Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, in a statement quoted the President as saying this while receiving the report of the committee on Citizen Data Management and Harmonisation chaired by the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola.

The Aregbesola-led committee was set up in February to address issues that led to the US temporary visa restrictions on Nigerian passport holders, which came into effect on February 21, 2020.

Adesina said the President expressed delight that two out of the six areas of concern raised by the US had been fully addressed.

The President said, ‘‘I also note the progress made by Nigeria towards the removal of the visa restrictions as two out of the six areas of concern raised by the United States had been fully addressed, two are substantially satisfied while some progress is being made on the remaining two.”

According to the statement, the committee had among other things recommended the establishment of a National Criminal Information Management, fashioned after the INTERPOL model, and a National Criminal DNA Laboratory, to aid criminal investigation, administration of criminal justice as well as sharing of relevant information.

In his remarks, Aregbesola was quoted as reporting that Nigeria had fully satisfied two of the six areas of concern raised by the US, two others substantially satisfied, and progress being made on the remaining two.

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