The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Andrew Pocock, has once again cleared the air on the controversy surrounding a proposed UK government’s bond on visa applicants from some countries, including Nigeria.
He clarified that, ‘the visa bond, as it is being called here, is not a £3,000 charge for a British visa. That is not the case, it is not going to happen now and it is not going to happen in the future. Visa fee, which is what you pay for a visa, will not go to £3,000 or anywhere near it.’
Pocock also explained that there are plans to influence the inflow of more Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) from British companies into Nigeria.
He said this after ringing the closing bell at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in Lagos.
The United Kingdom is reviewing its plan to introduce a £3,000 visa bond scheme.
“We have made it very clear to our government in London that there is concern about this. So, this is being reviewed and considered in London as we speak now.” he said
He further said the visa bond is yet to be approved and if even its approved it will only apply to a very minute number of the over 150, 000 Nigerians that will apply for UK visas.
He also said while there were security concerns in Nigeria, they were not overwhelming in many respects and could be managed.
He said the British government will not jeopardize diplomatic ties with Nigeria with any move that will call the relationship between both nations to question.
The British government had proposed a new scheme under which some visitors from six commonwealth countries, including Nigeria, would be asked to pay a £3,000 cash bond in return for visas that allows them to stay in the UK for up to six months.
Other countries include India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Ghana.