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Nigerians Airlift In South Africa Postponed ‘scheduled for Next Week’

The operating airline, Air Peace, confirmed that the planned
airlift of Nigerians in South Africa scheduled for Friday, September 6, has
been delayed till next Monday or Tuesday after discussions with the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs and the Nigerian High Commission in South Africa.

Reports had it that the shift in date is due to the
need to get valid travel documents for the already penciled passengers.

It was gathered that many of the intending passengers did
not have travel documents and many possess expired passports.

“Air Peace has prepared its aircraft, Boeing 777, for the
flight since Tuesday, but the Nigerian High Commission needed time to register
the Nigerians billed to travel. They are already doing that in Johannesburg and
Pretoria,” an airline source said.

The Nigerian government on Wednesday said they will start evacuation
of Nigerians willing to leave the country over the persistent xenophobic attack
in South Africa.

Nigeria’s foreign affairs minister Geoffrey Onyeama
disclosed that Air Peace will commence the evacuation exercise on Friday.

According to the minister of foreign affairs, the
development is made possible by the Proprietor of Air Peace Airlines, Chief
Allen Onyema, who volunteered to send an aircraft each daily from Friday, to
evacuate Nigerians who may wish to return to Nigeria, free of charge.

The government, therefore, urged Nigerians who have
relations in South Africa to inform them of the development.

“Interested Nigerians are therefore advised to communicate
with the High Commission of Nigeria in Pretoria and the Consulate General of
Nigeria in Johannesburg for further necessary arrangement”, the Nigerian
government stated.

Nigeria’s decision to airlift its citizens living in South
Africa came days after it said it was going to take actions on the xenophobic
attacks in the country.

Also, Nigerians have been advised not to pay money to anyone
or group of persons posing as Air Peace staff as they have not assigned any
agent in South Africa to collect money on their behalf.

Any Nigerian who has
paid money for deportation back to Nigeria with Air Peace should request a
refund and report to appropriate authorities.


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