The House of Representatives has resolved to interface with relevant government agencies to review the US immigration ban on Nigerians and to prevent similar future occurrences.
The House also urged the federal government to expedite necessary actions that may lead to the review or cancellation of the immigration restriction.
These resolutions were taken on Tuesday during plenary, following the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance on the need to unravel circumstances that led to immigration restriction by the United States moved by Yusuf Tujudeen (PDP, Kogi).
Presenting the motion, Tujudeen said the House was aware that the United States of America on 31st January 2020, as a direct consequence of non-compliance with the established identity-management and information-sharing criteria assessed by performance metrics, placed immigration restriction on Nigeria and four other countries Tanzania, Sudan, Eritrea, Myanmar and Kyrgyzstan;
He added that the House was: “also aware that the immigration restriction on Nigeria and these countries which is further fallout of alleged non-adequate data sharing on public safety and terrorism-related information necessary for protection is expected to take effect on 21st February 2020.
“Concerned that due to the tardiness of some government agencies and officials, Nigeria was unable to meet the deadline for performance metrics, identify management and information sharing criteria, which has led to the unfortunate immigration restriction order placed by the USA on Nigen’a.
“Observes that while Nigeria; through relevant agencies and top officials was not able to meet the criteria, some developing nations like Chad and Belarus did the needful and were exempted from the immigration restrictions.
“Worried that the immigration restrictions order on Nigeria aside having far-reaching multiplier effects on the polity, economy, and governance, attracts serious global embarrassment to our dear country”.
Speaking in support of the motion, Dachung Bagos (PDP, Plateau) called for the investigation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and relevant agencies that caused the restriction.
“No matter the reason, it’s an embarrassment to Nigeria for us to receive a ban. The House Committee on Foreign Affairs should investigate the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and relevant agencies to know why Nigeria was banned and report back to the House”, he submitted.
Similarly, Sergius Ogun (PDP-Edo) harped on the need to sanction the agencies responsible for the non-compliance with the established identity management and information sharing criteria assessed by performance metrics.
The motion was unanimously adopted when put to a voice vote by the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila who presided over the sitting.