Nigeria’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Geofferey Onyeama on Monday gave assurance that evacuation of Nigerians abroad due to the Coronavirus pandemic would commence on Wednesday May 6th
The Minister who disclosed this while speaking at the daily briefing of the Presidential Taskforce on COVlD-19 said the first evacuation would commence from Dubai.
According to Onyeama, an Emirates flight from Dubai is expected in Lagos on Wednesday May 6, which will be followed by a British Airways flight from the UK on Friday May 8.
“From Wednesday by God’s Grace, we will start the process of evacuation of our Nationals from outside the country.
“There are almost 4000 Nigerians wishing to come back home. If we had our way, we will bring them back home all at once but there are various constraints and the biggest constraint is where to quarantine them, particularly the bed.
“So we have done everything we can to get beds in Abuja and in Lagos. In Lagos we have about 300 beds available.
“The first flight that we hope to have on Wednesday is Emirates and it will be to Lagos. Then we are hoping that soon after that, a British Airways flight that is coming to Nigeria to evacuate some British citizens will help bring Nigerians coming back.
“So we are hoping that on Friday, we will be able to evacuate from the UK anything up to 300 or less Nigerians.
“We have also told our mission in the US that if there are any flights available, they should do a deal with them and get them to bring our people back.
“Our missions in New York, Atlanta and Washigton have told us that Ethiopian airline does have a regular commercial programme out of the US. So we are hoping that Monday next week, we can do a deal with Ethiopian airline to bring back a significant number of our people.” he said.