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UAE pays for 180 tickets as 252 stranded NIgerians return 

Additional 252 Nigerians stranded in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) returned yesterday, Saturday, August 22, 2020.,

292  Nigerians had earlier  returned from the Arab country on August 12.

The UAE government, it was learnt, paid for the tickets of 180 of the evacuees who couldn’t afford to pay for their return.

The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) via its twitter handle said the evacuees arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos via an Emirates Airline flight.

“Out of this number,” NIDCOM said, “180 of them had their tickets paid for by the UAE govt, for those who claimed they couldn’t afford a return ticket.

“In total, 18 flights have so far evacuated 4,984 Nigerians from Dubai. Out of which the UAE government paid for 517 Nigerians on 3 Fly Dubai flights and 380 Nigerians on Emirates Airline.”

More evacuees – 174 – are expected to return to the country from the UAE on the 25th of August, 2020, according to the agency, with their flight paid for by the government of the Asian nation.

READ  Gambia youths lament death of 58 migrants in Atlantic Ocean

“This will bring the total number of Nigerians evacuated gratis by Dubai authorities to 1,071,” the statement added.

All evacuees, prior to their departure, NIDCOM said, had tested negative to COVID-19 but will be undergoing self-isolation in line with guidelines set by the Federal Government and other relevant health agencies.

The UAE is one of the countries where a good number of Nigerians have been repatriated since the outbreak of the pandemic halted international flights.

During a briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 on Monday, August 13th, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha had, however, said evacuation flights would end on the 25th of the month.

He noted that the decision was to enable international airline operators to prepare for the resumption of international flights which was halted in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

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6 Nigerians deported from India


TWO Nigerians have been deported from India for overstaying their visas, the Delhi Police said on Thursday, bringing to six the total number of Nigerians expelled from the country since the beginning of this year.

According to a statement released on its official Twitter page, the Dwarka Police said the two Nigerians and a Sudanese were arrested and deported by officers from Uttam Nagar Police Station, after they were found to be living in India without valid visas and passports.

“2 #Nigerian Nationals & 1 from #Sudan were found living without having valid #Visa & #Passport during area #Patrolling duty, were deported by the staff of PS Uttam Nagar,” the statement read, using the hashtag #ActionAgainstIllegalStaying.

It was gathered that the two Nigerians recently deported were among 10 Nigerian nationals picked up by the police from the Uttam Nagar in Dwarka district on Wednesday, January 6.

Two Nigerian males were deported from the country on January 13th, 2021, by officers from the Mohan Garden Police Station and another male with one female were deported on January 11 in a similar sting operation by men from Uttam Nagar Police Division.

READ  Covid 19: UN in West and Central Africa worry about migrants as traffickers abandon victims in desert 

The deputy commissioner of police, Dwarka, Santosh Kumr Meena, who confirmed the development, described their action as a gross violation of the Indian visa norms.

“Their visas have also expired but they are continuously staying in India which is a gross violation of the Indian visa norms. They have not provided any suitable reason and supportive documents for their overstay in India,” he said.

Over the years, several Nigerians residing in the country have been arrested and deported. The offences charged against them include illegal stay, internet fraud, online romance scams and drug peddling.

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Biden reverses Trump’s travel ban on Nigeria, Yemen, Eritrea, others

Mr Biden has now nullified the entry ban on citizens from over a dozen countries, including Eritrea, Yemen, Nigeria, and Sudan.

Newly sworn-in American president, Joe Biden, on Wednesday, issued an executive order nullifying a travel ban imposed on citizens of some Muslim-majority countries by his predecessor, Donald Trump.

Before his exit from White House on Wednesday, Mr Trump-led administration was notorious for its harsh policies against immigrants and asylum seekers, one of his many election campaign promises.

He tightened the policies amidst the coronavirus pandemic which rocked the globe, claiming his decision was to protect American populace.

However, Mr Biden, immediately after his inauguration on Wednesday, issued a number of executive orders undoing some of the policies and projects of his predecessor.

Reversals
Mr Biden has now nullified the entry ban on citizens from over a dozen countries, including Nigeria, Eritrea, Yemen, and Sudan.

“There’s no time to waste.

“These are just all starting points,” he said before signing the 17 executive orders in the White House, a statement that connotes the possibility of many more to come.

READ  Thousands of migrants forced to sleep rough after closure, destruction of Bosnia camp

Mr Trump’s strict immigration policies have been condemned by leaders and civil groups in the past.

The American Civil Liberties Union, on Wednesday lauded Mr Biden’s decision berating his predecessor’s travel policy a “cruel Muslim ban that targeted Africans.

 

Culled from Premium Times

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Frightened residents brace as Cyclone Eloise approaches Mozambique

IOM is assisting the Government of Mozambique’s preparations for the arrival of Cyclone Eloise, moving people to safety in accommodation centers in Buzi. Photo: IOM 2021

 

Roughly 160 International Organization for Migration (IOM) staff in central Mozambique are working to prepare local communities for the imminent arrival of Cyclone Eloise, which is currently packing winds of at least 150 km/h.

“The people are scared,” said Cesaltino Vilanculo, an IOM Mobile team leader in the provincial capital Beira, who helped hundreds of families evacuate from unsafe temporary settlements to two accommodation centers.

“The water is rising in their zones and people are frightened, bracing for yet another storm.”

Eloise is expected to make landfall in Beira late Friday or early Saturday. By mid-afternoon today shops across the city are closed and flooded streets, empty.

IOM personnel will be ready to respond immediately with specialists in camp coordination and management, shelter, the distribution of non-food items, health and protection services and data mapping under IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM).

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The Port of Beira is set to close on Friday for a period of about 40 hours in expectation of dangerous winds and rain from the afternoon of 22 January through the morning of 24 January. Beira is the main entry point for goods bound for north coastal Mozambique.

A limited supply of emergency non-food items had been stockpiled in Beira, including tarps and water tanks. However, resources are stretched, as IOM is actively responding to the crisis across Northern Mozambique.

At the same time, over 900 people are already displaced in Beira City due to recent heavy rains and the impact of Tropical Storm Chalane, which hit nearby Sofala Province on 30 December.

“The government is working, identifying the safe places to bring the people who are most vulnerable,” explained Aida Temba, a protection project assistant with IOM Mozambique.

“The rain is coming, and the water is rising and it’s not easy to reach all the people who need assistance. But we do our best to respond.”

Hundreds of families were evacuated to two accommodation centres, sheltered in tents provided by Mozambique’s National Institute for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction (INGD). One accommodation center was today closed, in favor of moving families to schools, which provide more stable structure. Those families’ needs include food, potable water, hygiene kits and soap.

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IOM Mozambique also has reported that due to heavy rainfall and the discharge of water from the Chicamba dam and the Mavuzi reservoir—both in the Buzi District west of Beira—over 19,000 people have been affected and hundreds are being moved to accommodation centers. Their needs include food, hygiene kits, and COVID-19 prevention materials.

IOM staff are supporting the Government of Mozambique with the movements in both Beira and Buzi and actively working to improve drainage ways in resettlement sites in preparation for further rains.

IOM’s DTM, working jointly with Mozambique’s INGD, is poised to produce a report on displacement and damages within the first 72 hours of the cyclone’s arrival.

Tropical storms historically are common in these early months of rainy season. Cyclone Idai struck the country in March 2019. It is considered one of the worst tropical cyclones to hit Africa on record, claiming hundreds of lives, and affecting three million people across wide swaths of Mozambique, Madagascar, Malawi and Zimbabwe. A second powerful storm, Cyclone Kenneth, hit Mozambique just weeks later.

READ  Covid 19: UN in West and Central Africa worry about migrants as traffickers abandon victims in desert 

Total property damages from Cyclone Idai have been estimated at some USD2.2 billion. Almost two years later, roughly 100,000 people remain in resettlement sites, which also have been battered by the recent rains.

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