Nigerians in Thailand reject payment before evacuation order

Nigerians residing in Bangkok, Thailand appear set for a showdown with the Nigerian Ambassador to the country, Ahmed Nuhu Bamalli and the Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama over the directive that stranded Nigerians in Bangkok anxious to return home should pay a sum of N297, 600 being cost for accommodation and feeding for their mandatory 14 days isolation in Nigeria.

The memo, “Need to pay for Quarantine, Isolation, accommodation centre or hotels before Departure and Arrival in Nigeria, ” dated May 14, 2020, addressed to prospective evacuees in Thailand was signed by Head of Chancery, Bangkok, Thailand Nicholas Uhomoibhi.

Speaking with Tribune Online on Friday at the Presidential Task Force on COVID–19 media briefing, Ambassador Onyeama justified the payment before evacuation order as he said the nation was financially handicapped.

But the Nigerians In Diaspora Organization, Thailand in a letter dated May 17,2020 and addressed to the Foreign Affairs Minister rejected the order.

President of the organisation, Dr. Lloyd C. Nwafor said the directive lacked human face.

He argued that some of the evacuees have lost their jobs and were living at Immigration Deportation Camp (IDC), where they survive on charity.

The Nigerians In Diaspora Organization Thailand declared that asking jobless families to raise money for their tickets and pay for accommodation and feeding at isolation centres back home was insensitive, uncaring and harsh.

They asked the Foreign Affairs Minister to review his stand.
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