Nigerian citizens seeking entry to the United States of America may never get visas to travel, recent reports have revealed.
The Consul-General, United States Embassy, William Laidlaw, during a tour of the IS consular section in Abuja on Thursday, said contrary to suggestions by some Nigerians, the US visa application processes were simple and not as stringent as people thought.
He stressed that the American mission was working to improve and make its visa processes better for Nigerians by decentralising it and that for applicants to show that they qualify for a visit to the US, they must show social and economic ties sufficient to meet the American immigration terms, adding that those who failed to meet this requirement are often turned down.
Punch reports that Laidlaw also said that those who had social and economic ties usually had easier time and more chance to obtain US visa than somebody who is just starting out.
“To really qualify for a visit to the US, you have to show you have social and economic ties sufficient to meet the immigration terms we have in our laws. To have those social and economic ties usually means somebody who has developed a career, developed a household and has done something to develop himself within Nigeria,” the consul-general said.
But there was a bit of good news for applicants who have been denied entry visas before, as Laidlaw said people they could re-apply if they felt that the situations had changed, since statistics showed that many who re-applied were issued visas.
He said: “If you can establish your social and economic ties and we understand who you are in Nigerian context, that allows us to make an evaluation judgment; It’s very hard for very young people, I’m sorry, but that’s the way the law is written,” noting however, that said young business people or students who did not receive a visa should not be discouraged as they could be successful the next time they applied.
Just last year, husband of Nigeria's sprint queen, Blessing Okagbare was denied entry visa to the United States following plans by the couple to temporarily relocate to the country.