Xenophobia: First batch of Nigerians in South Africa arrive Lagos

Xenophobia: First batch of Nigerians in South Africa arrive Lagos

The first batch of 187 Nigerians who were evacuated from South Africa have landed at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria. The evacuees departed OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, around 4p.m aboard an Air Peace Boeing 777 aircraft. The aircraft touched down at 9:34pm on Wednesday, according to a foreign affairs ministry official,

The first batch of 187 Nigerians who were evacuated from South Africa have landed at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.

The evacuees departed OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, around 4p.m aboard an Air Peace Boeing 777 aircraft.

The aircraft touched down at 9:34pm on Wednesday, according to a foreign affairs ministry official, Mr. Kimiebi Ebenfa, who was on board the flight.

The official said, “We just landed safely despite the delays in South Africa.

The returnees comprising men, women and children were the first batch of the 640 Nigerians who registered for evacuation following the xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

The Punch reports that about 313 were billed to leave on Wednesday, but most of them could not travel with the first flight due to lack of travel documents.

Providing an update on the evacuation operation earlier while in South Africa, Ebenfa said the passengers checked in for departure at 3:27 pm.

According to him, the flight, which was scheduled for 10a.m. was delayed by the slow check-in process and immigration clearance.

He said, “Flight was delayed due to the slow process of check-in and immigration clearance.

“There were also complaints of system failure.

“Out of the 313 confirmed for the first batch,only 84 were cleared so far,” he said at 9:35a.m. before the flight took off around 4p.m.

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The Chairman, Nigeria Diaspora Commission, Honourable Abike Dabiri-Erewa, today, said the arrival of Nigerians from South Africa would be delayed for about five hours due to immigration documentation in South Africa.

ABIKE DABIRI-EREWA

The returnees were expected to have touched down at the Cargo Section of the Muritala Mohammed Airport, Lagos around 1pm Nigeria time.

She explained that the South Africa immigration officials came up with “unexpected travel documentations and clearance for the Nigerians  returning to their Country.

“However, Nigeria officials in South Africa are sorting out the immigration formalities. So, hopefully, our brothers and sisters will be arriving Nigeria around 5.30 to 6pm”.

SOUTH AFRICA PRESIDENT, CYRIL RAMAPHOSA, PRESIDENT OF NIGERIA, MUHAMMADU BUHARI
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