The government of Nigerian has reacted a recent decision of Ethiopia to suspend the giving of visa on arrival to Nigerians.
The government, on Thursday reacted to the decision of the Ethiopian government to ban visa on arrival (VOA) for Nigerian travellers visiting the “Horn of Africa” country.
SaharaReporters earlier reported that there were ripples in the travel industry following the decision of the Ethiopian government to ban visas on arrival for Nigerian travellers visiting the country.
The development which took effect on Tuesday is expected to create some hiccups for travellers going to Ethiopia, according to stakeholders.
The management of Ethiopian Airlines, the national airline of the country, had informed travel partners of the new development.
However, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement signed by its spokesperson, Francisca K. Omayuli (Mrs), said the suspended issuance of "visa on arrival" to non-resident foreigners at all points of entry into the country was over security concerns and the current political situation in the country.
Omayuli asserted that the suspension applies to nationals of all countries bearing Standard Passports, who seek entry into Ethiopia and is not specifically targeted at Nigerians, as reported in some quarters.
She said that the Ethiopian authorities have explained that the measure is aimed at better border control of the movement of persons into Ethiopia in view of the ongoing armed conflict in the Northern part of the country.
According to her, the measure is said to be temporary, pending improvement in the security situation in the country and not a replacement of Ethiopia's open visa policy.
The statement reads, "The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria wishes to inform the general public that the Federal Government of Ethiopia has suspended issuance of ‘visa on arrival’ to non resident foreigners at all points of entry into the country, over security concerns and the current political situation in that country.
"The suspension applies to nationals of all countries bearing Standard Passports, who seek entry into Ethiopia and not specifically targeted at Nigerians, as reported in some quarters.
"The Ethiopian authorities have explained that the measure is aimed at better border control of movement of persons into Ethiopia in view of the ongoing armed conflict in the Northern part of the country. The measure is said to be temporary, pending improvement in the security situation in the country and not a replacement of Ethiopia's open visa policy.
"Therefore, Nigerians bearing Standard Passports intending to travel to Ethiopia are by this notification advised to obtain appropriate entry visas at the Ethiopian Embassy or an electronic visa (e-visa) through the country's Immigration and Citizenship Service (ICS) portal at www.evisa.gov.et Also, those transiting through Bole International Airport, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to other destinations or intend to briefly stop over would require valid entry visa to enable them access hotel facilities in the city or else would be obligated to remain in the airport pending their connecting flight.
"The new temporary visa restriction measure came into effect on 29th September, 2022. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will liaise with the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and relevant Airlines to ensure that intending Nigerian travellers enroute Ethiopia are well sensitized.
"The general public is invited to take note of the new visa regime of the Federal Government of Ethiopia and be guided accordingly. In a related development, the Nigerian Government has noted the concern expressed by the Ethiopian authorities over the abuse of the country's visa policy by some Nigerians who enter the country on tourist visas and remain even after the expiration of their visas, engaging in unwholesome activities.”
"The activities of these few elements not only tarnish the image of the country, but limit opportunities for well meaning Nigerians outside the country. Such persons are enjoined to turn a new leaf and take advantage of the opportunity provided by the Ethiopian National Security Agencies to participate in the ongoing registration of undocumented migrants to avoid unpleasant situations," she added.