Gone are the days when you were confident of a visa after going to America for the first time on the B1/B2 platform because, your next need for a visa is in two years and you do not need to appear. Today, the case is different, fellow citizen, you must show up!
Show up to defend your need for a long planned vacation, show up to explain why you think you need to go to ‘God’s own country’ and most recently, show up to be refused ‘the’ visa.
A woman got her baby’s US passport few hours after delivery but took the same baby weeks to get a Nigerian visa. The said woman had to reschedule her flight 3 times…Oh beloveth nation, who hast beleaguered thee for so long?
Several people who have genuinely travelled to America easily for years and have returned and not overstayed, are now conveniently being denied by the American embassy. How do you get treated unethically in your own country because you want to visit another?
A director in a reputable firm, who has travelled to America consistently for the past 10 years, got refused visa recently and his wife and children were given. Dear Consulate, they were meant to go on a holiday…without daddy? How? Why?
We complain of being treated dishonourably at some foreign embassies in Nigeria but what could be more disheartening than the way fellow countrymen in other countries find it convenient to treat their fellow country mates badly. For instance, it has become a norm that it takes months to get a Nigerian passport or a renewal abroad. It is so bad that Nigerians abroad prefer to fly to Nigeria to renew their passports.
Nigeria seems to be stuck in a circle of ineptitude and shameful conduct both home and away. ‘Home’ because getting a passport in Nigeria isn’t smooth either. Will it be wrong to imply that behavioural defect is a major challenge deterring the altitude of the nation Nigeria both from the government and the governed? Is bad behaviour now the standard we must accept and internalise? Countries are trending for ground breaking innovations and unmatchable feats, Nigeria, in what do you trend?
Talking about bad behaviour, Ewohime Akpovweta recently damaged 5 cars parked within the environs of the Nigerian high commission in London. Bad behaviour right? Yes! We agree but bad behaviour is also denying your fellow country man the privilege of having something that signifies he is your fellow country man, a Nigerian passport…A Nigerian Visa.
In all of the global belief on the perception about Nigeria, it is worrisome that the ministry of foreign affairs hasn’t been vocal enough on these issues. It is a reason to worry. Is it therefore fair to conclude that the Nigerian government does not really care about its citizens both home and away?
There have been issues raised concerning the challenges facing the High commissions, challenges like funding. The recent shutdown of some foreign missions could be evidence that foreign missions are underfunded. If this is the case, what is the Nigerian government for example, doing about this?
It is amazing how Americans care for their citizens even when the child’s parents are not citizens. Nigerians are known for imbibing cultures better than the owners, smarter in project executions, amongst the top 10 in reputable hospitals and organisations locally and more internationally.
Can this same intelligent attributes be spread individually across the nation? Can the government value the lives of the citizenry by protecting and supporting it as pledged whether home or away? Can the honour and glory of this exceptional homeland truly be upheld? So help us God! “Amen” I hear you say but your faith without works is dead. Act!