Nigeria's Foreign Affairs Minister, Geofrey Onyeama
Nigerians returning home due to the coronavirus pandemic will have to offset their two-week quarantine bill on arrival.
This was contained in a revised guidelines released by the Nigerian Government on Friday.
Before the new guideline, the returnees were only required to pay for their flight back home while the government maintained them for two weeks in their various isolation centres.
At the moment those that came back from the United Arab Emirates, the United States and the United Kingdom are being taken care of by the government.
But this will no longer continue as the new guidelines stopped that.
The new guidelines have also been sent to Embassies and High Commissions which have communicated them to Nigerians wishing to return home.
The government said it imposed the fees “due to measures that are beyond the control of COVID-19 local organizing team.”
A letter by the Embassy of Nigeria in Bangkok, Thailand, which was signed by the Head of Chancery, Nicholas P. Uhomoibhi and dated May 14, said each returnee is expected to pay N297,600 for quarantine and feeding in Nigeria.
The letter said: “I am directed to bring to your attention due to measures that are beyond the control of COVID-19 local organizing team in Nigeria, all evacuees going to Nigeria henceforth are to now pay for their quarantine, isolation, accommodation centre or hotels before departure and arrival in Nigeria
In this regard, all prospective evacuees are to note the negotiated rate below: Accommodation (N15,000 x16 days=N240,000) and Feeding (N3,600 x16 days=N57,600). Total: N297,600 at N18,600 x16 days.
“Kindly be informed that these rates were negotiated in Nigeria and that the Embassy has been instructed not to airlift any evacuee who fails to pay the above fee".
Similar, in another letter sent to all Nigerians in Kuwait by the Embassy of Nigeria on May 13, 2020, said the evacuees will pay N297,600 for their quarantine in Nigeria apart from the air fares.
The letter, titled “Re: Request for evacuation of Nigerian nationals in the wake of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.” said in part: “Further to our notice of 5th April 2020 on the above mentioned subject matter, the Embassy wishes to inform that all intending evacuees are to pay for their quarantine/isolation/accommodation/centre/hotels before departure and arrival in Nigeria.
“The negotiated rate is as follows: Accommodation-N240,000 (N15,000 x16 days); Feeding-N57,6009( N3,600 x 16 days). Total- N297,600 (N18,600 x16 days).
“All evacuees are to pay the aforementioned amount for their quarantine/isolation/centre/hotels directly to the airline along with their tickets. Evacuees have option to pay in dollars or its equivalent in Naira.
“It is important to note that evacuees that do not pay for their quarantine/isolation/accommodation/ centre/ hotels will not be allowed to board the flight.”
For Turkey, the Embassy in Ankara informed them with a May 13 memo to pay N297,600.
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