Britain is working with the Federal Government on the planned deportation of 29,000 Nigerians from the United Kingdom, an exercise that is expected to commence soon after fulfillment of all legal obligations.
The UK stated that it would continue to maintain dialogue with the FG “on this important and sensitive matter which is of vital importance to our relations.”
The UK High Commission in Nigeria told our correspondent in Abuja that the removal of persons who did not have a right to remain in the UK is carried out in conjunction with relevant Nigerian authorities including the Nigeria High Commission in London.
The acting Nigeria High Commissioner in London, Olukunle Bamgbose, had informed Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, during his visit to London in October, 2015, that the UK government had placed deportation tag on 29,000 Nigerians.
He expressed worries over the removal policy of the UK government, noting that the migration policy came as a result of the migration crisis created by the troubled regions in the world.
“I think about 29,000 Nigerians have been designated to be deported. We are insisting that due process must be followed before Nigerians are really removed from the UK to Nigeria,” Bamgbose had said.
But responding to inquiries by our correspondent, the Press and Public Affairs Officer, UK High Commission, Joe Abuku, said the UK had always worked with FG to facilitate visas for large numbers of travellers between the two countries and “to ensure the return of the small minority who choose not to return when their visa expired.”
He did not confirm the number of Nigerians that would be affected by the deportation exercise, but stressed that those concerned would be removed “after we have determined nationality.”