Stranded Nigerians To Be Evacuated From US, To Pay N639,200
Nigerians that are stranded in the US can now breathe a sigh of relief. This is so because plans are already on the way to evacuate them from the US to Nigeria.
The evacuation of Nigerians that are stranded in the U.S. due to the coronavirus pandemic is to begin on 10 May.
This information was released on Sunday in a notice by Mr Benaoyagha Okoyen, the consul-general of Nigeria in New York. He signed it on behalf of the Nigerian Missions in the U.S.
No fewer than 700 Nigerians have registered with the missions for evacuation. The exercise will be done in batches.
Okoyen said that the first batch of 270 evacuees would be flown to Abuja through an Ethiopian Airlines flight ET 509.
The plane is expected to depart the Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey at 9.15 p.m. and fly directly to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
As earlier announced by the Federal Government, the flight is at the expense of the evacuees. They have the option of flying economy class, according to the notice.
“The projected cost for the one-way economy ticket is between 1,300 dollars (N488,800) and 1,700 dollars (N639,200) per adult.
“Please note that over 700 Nigerian nationals have registered with our missions in the USA to be evacuated.
“However, only 270 passengers shall be accommodated in this batch of evacuation.
“Missions will, therefore, attend to applicants on a first-come, first-served basis and shall prioritise the list of evacuees according to their immigration status.
“This includes the need to consider those stranded with proof of short-stay visas, the elderly, families with children and returning students,” it said.
To curb the spread of COVID-19, the Federal Government on March 18 imposed restrictions on travels from 13 countries with high burdens.
The countries are China, Iran, South Korea, Germany, Italy, the U.S. United Kingdom, Switzerland, Norway, Netherlands, Spain, France, Japan, Australia and Sweden.
Consequently, many Nigerians, who were on short-term visits to the affected countries, became stranded.
Okoyen told NAN that there would be subsequent dates for more evacuations of Nigerians. He also said that the dates would be announced in due course.