Nigeria is gradually moving towards a “visa-on-arrival” regime as part of efforts to improve “Ease of doing business.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Geoffrey Onyeama stated this on Tuesday at a meeting with his Namibian counterpart, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, in Windhoek, the Namibian capital.
The two countries have also agreed to strengthen cooperation in areas that would be beneficial to them as well as the African continent.
Onyeama said Nigeria is moving towards a “visa-on-arrival” regime as part of the policy of “Ease of doing business”.
The minister added that “online applications will facilitate that, but it is still a work in progress”.
He noted that they addressed issues regarding the issuance of visas to Namibians and Nigerians.
“Any Namibian wishing to obtain a visa to Nigeria can apply and will be considered as was the case in the past. Once the requirements are met satisfactorily, such a person will be issued a visa. Same applies to a Nigerian wishing to go to Namibia,” he said.
The meeting also agreed that any visa denial or deportation will not be stamped in the holder’s passport. Furthermore, consular meetings will be held quarterly to assess how things are progressing.
He also said over the years, Nigeria has engaged with Namibia through the Technical Aid Corps (TAC), which is “one mechanism through which we support countries by sending out our brightest young professionals in various fields – medical, educational etc depending on the needs of the country for a period of time”.
He reiterated his belief that the partnership being forged through the Joint Commission can “transform the lives of our peoples in the framework of the 2063 Agenda of the African Union (AU) and the 2030 Sustainable Development goals of the UN”.
Diplomatic relations between Nigeria and Namibia date back to the March 2, 1990, following the country’s attainment of independence. Since then, relations have been warm and cordial owing to the role Nigeria played during Namibia’s liberation struggle with the provision of financial, material and logistical support for SWAPO.
By Olaotan Falade