The Federal Government of Nigeria has fulfilled its words by publishing the passport details of 100 travellers, who failed to undergo the mandatory COVID-19 test after their return to Nigeria, thereby suspending them from traveling for the next six months.
Numbers of the passports were published by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Saturday.
Recall that travellers are mandated to run a covid-19 test seven days after their arrival.
Briefing newsmen on Thursday, Sani Aliyu, National Coordinator of the PTF, said the holders of the passports will be suspended from travelling for a minimum of six months for flouting obligation to test.
He added that visas of the foreigners who evade the mandatory test would be revoked.
Aliyu said the 100 affected persons have been contacted and they have confirmed that they failed to do the post-arrival test.
He said only their passport numbers will be published, and not names, adding that punitive measures would be taken against others in the category of those who evaded COVID-19 test.
The coordinator said persons caught presenting fake negative COVID test results for travel would be punished.
“From now on, particularly for those coming from the UK and South Africa, we will pay special attention to these flights. If you do not do your day seven test, by day 10, you will automatically go onto the suspension list and your travel documents, your passport would be suspended for a minimum period of six months,” he said.
“If you carry a foreign passport, with a visa, we will revoke your visa. And because we are able to track a smaller group of persons than a large number of persons, which has always been the challenge we have, we are now able to enforce this, specifically for passengers coming from these routes until further notice.
“In addition to that, over this weekend, we will publish the first list of 100 passport numbers – Nigerian passport numbers – that will be suspended for six months. We’ve already contacted these passengers and we’ve confirmed that they have not had a COVID-19 PCR test. We will not be publishing names, but we will publish the passport numbers.”
At the last briefing, Boss Mustapha, chairman of the task force, had said a total of 20,216 in-bound travelers refused to show up for the post arrival test they signed up, thereby endangering members of the public.
He had said the PTF had concluded arrangements with the Nigeria Immigration Service ” to impose sanctions on these defaulters for breaching the public health protocols, within ambit of the law.”