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UK to continue processing work, student visas despite Nigerian travel restrictions

Lamentations in UK as international students number drop on strict student visa rule

The United Kingdom (UK) says it will continue to process work visas, student visas and permanent residence visas for Nigerians despite the recent travel ban.

The UK last week put Nigeria on its red list of countries from which foreign travelers are not allowed entry as a result of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

A statement released on Sunday, December 5 had noted that visitor visa applications were suspended till the travel restriction was lifted.

This affects foreigners hoping to travel to the UK for tourism, visiting friends, short-term business activities, and for medical reasons.

The British High Commission on Tuesday clarified that the freeze will not affect other categories like student visa, work visa, or permanent residence visa.

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Successful applicants are to be quarantined in a managed facility once they land in the UK, a process that also applies to citizens and permanent residents that have travelled through a red list country in the past 10 days before arrival.

Canada was the first to put Nigeria on its red list last week, allowing entrance only for citizens and permanent residents.

The emergence of the variant has led to a flurry of travel bans, mostly affecting African countries, with cases already detected in over 30 countries, many of them in Europe.

The travel restrictions that have especially targeted African countries have been widely-criticised as discriminatory and hysterical by top regional and global health officials.