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Saudi Embassy Addresses Cancelled Visas, Says Deported Nigerians Submitted ‘Incorrect Information’

"This procedure was not limited to Nigerian citizens only, but rather to citizens of other countries."


 

The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia clarified media reports about the deportation of 264 Nigerians upon entry into the Kingdom, stating that it was not targeting Nigerians.

On Monday, The Saudi Arabian government cancelled the visa of all the 264 passengers airlifted by Nigeria’s major carrier, Air Peace, on arrival at the country from Kano, insisting that they be returned to Nigeria.

However, in a statement released on Wednesday, the Sauisi Embassy said, “The passengers who were denied entry, and subsequently deported to their initial destinations, didn’t fulfil the entry conditions and requirements in accordance with the applicable rules and regulations of the Kingdom, as they submitted incorrect information to obtain a category of visa that doesn’t apply to them, which was discovered upon their arrival.”

“This procedure was not limited to Nigerian citizens only, but rather to citizens of other countries.”

Similarly, The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in a statement made available to Channels Television on Tuesday, said it was “investigating the matter to see if any consular or aviation rules have been flouted.”

Special Adviser on Media and Communications Strategy to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Tuggar, said the ministry will ensure such actions that impact the welfare of Nigerian citizens are mitigated in the future in line with what was described as the Four Ds strategy of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

The Royal Saudi Embassy also issued cautionary measures for applicants wishing to visit the Arabian Peninsula.

“The Royal Embassy would like to stress the importance of following the procedures and laws enacted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for all visitors,” it also read.

“Furthermore, all passengers should review all the documents to determine their conformity with the conditions before departing from their countries to the Kingdom.”