The latest visa ban imposed on Nigeria by the United Arab Emirates came into effect as the Middle Eastern country began rejecting valid visa holders and barring others from entering.
Two travel agencies confirmed to Peoples Gazette that their visa customers were barred and new applications were rejected without refunds. Six travelers told The Gazette that the visas issued were immediately cancelled.
Cyprian Ugwu, who was trying to fly from Poland to Dubai via Milan, told The Gazette he was banned from traveling to the Arab country despite having a valid three-month visa.
The ban was communicated on Saturday in a notice to the country’s business partners in Nigeria, including travel agents.
“All applications submitted to Dubai are now rejected. It is general for Nigerians, and approvals are pending at the moment. “Please advise your clients to resubmit applications when the issue is resolved between the two governments,” the notice reads.
In September, the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that Nigerians under the age of 40 would no longer be issued tourist visas for the United Arab Emirates, as the Emiratis “introduced a new visa regime and stopped issuing tourist visas. tourist visas to people under 40, except for those applying for a family visa.
In early August, the United Arab Emirates began issuing visas to Nigerians after imposing outright bans following sectarian clashes between rival Eiye and Aiye sectarian groups in Dubai and Sharjah.
Under the new requirements, Nigerians wishing to travel to the Middle Eastern city must include confirmed hotel reservations, a six-month bank statement showing inflows and outflows, and confirmation of a confirmed return ticket.
The visa ban comes as authorities in Dubai sentenced Dinchi Lar, a Nigerian citizen, to one year in prison for tweeting a video revealing the horrific treatment she and other Africans were forced to endure in the Dubai International Airport.