The fedeal government of Nigeria through the Minister of Aviation, Senator. Hadi Sirika, has said it would retaliate to travel ban imposed to Nigeria by the UK, Canda, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and any other country(ies) that placed Nigeria on red notice after the news broke that a covid-19 variant known as omircron has been found in South Africa.
LatestNGnews.com reported earlier Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, Indonesia and others had restricted Nigerian flights from entering their borders, with Indonesia saying it’ll review its travel ban to Nigeria every 14 days.
However, reacting to the development which was taken as an act of discrimination by most of the African countries, minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, revealed that those countries will be Nigeria’s red list not later than Tuesday, if they do not remove Nigeria from the list of banned countries.
He said during the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID which met and reviewed the various travel ban placed on Nigerian citizens, that their planes will not be allowed to enter Nigeria, if Nigerian planes cannot be allowed in their various countries, he concluded that the ban is simply unacceptable. In his words;
“There is also the case of Saudi Arabia, which put Nigeria on the banned list. No visa, travels into that county and so also Canada and the United Kingdom. And so today there was a zoom meeting by the COVID-19 Task Force, which I participated, we have said the ban isn’t acceptable by us and recommend that Canada, UK, Saudi Arabia and Argentina be also on red list.”
“If they don’t allow Nigerian citizens to get into their country, their airlines and citizens shouldn’t come to Nigeria too. I’m very sure between now and Monday, perhaps Tuesday maximum, all those countries will be out on red list from the Task Force of COVID-19.
Once they are put on red list, their airlines will also be banned. The development comes after the Federal Government reciprocated some restrictions that the United Arab Emirates aviation authorities took against Air Peace, Nigeria’s largest carrier.