We Are Expecting Pardoned Convicted Nigerians From US, UAE, Others – PTF

Akinola Ajibola and Friday Okeregbe  
Updated August 18, 2020
PTF chairman, Boss Mustapha, briefs reporters in Abuja on August 17, 2020.


Nigeria is expecting the return of some of its citizens who have been convicted and pardoned in various countries around the world.

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Mr Boss Mustapha, disclosed this on Monday at a press briefing in Abuja.

He listed some of the countries that were planning to repatriate such Nigerians to include the United Arab Emirates and the United States.

Mustapha said, “A number of countries have signified intention to repatriate Nigerians convicted and pardoned and paroled in those countries.

“They include the UAE, Egypt and the United States of America. Coming in the midst of our National Response to COVID-19, all relevant agencies of government are taking multi-sectoral steps to ensure that the process remains within acceptable international protocols and in line with bilateral agreements.”

He stressed that the repatriation of the convicted Nigerians was quite different from the government’s regular evacuation flights.

The PTF chairman announced that the evacuation flights would end on August 25, to allow airports sufficient time to prepare for the resumption of international flights.

He noted the decline in COVID-19 fatalities, high discharge rates, and consistent under-500 daily cases for the past four weeks.

Mustapha, who is the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), stressed that this was in spite of the huge jump in the nation’s testing capacity and increased daily tests conducted.

He, however, informed Nigerians that the country has yet to attain the desired level that would enable authorities to make conclusive statements on the rate of infection in Nigeria.

The PTF chairman asked Nigerians to keep doing that which was giving the country record improvements and desist from actions capable of undermining the successes.

According to him, the country is fully in the community spread phase and one of the major measures that should be taken is to keep testing to detect and treat.