Nigerians aspiring to travel out of the country to the United States of America now buy visa interview date at the rate of N600,000, some victims have told SaharaReporters.
They stated that this is as a result of visa interview dates filling up till 2024, forcing those who are desperate to secure an interview to cough out huge amounts of money to officials.
A witness, Mr Kayode Usman (not real name), who has already applied for a visa to travel to the United States told SaharaReporters on Tuesday.
Usman disclosed that a US Naval Officer who is resident in Nigeria confirmed this to him as he also tried to help someone secure a date for an interview at the US Embassy in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
He added that those who had planned to travel on the basis of health and academic issues are the most desperate to leave the country and would get the date at the exorbitant cost of N600,000.
“So, it was a friend of mine who reached out yesterday. He discussed the whole thing and said that for now, you cannot get a date earlier than 2024 on the website of the United States. It is there on the US portal. That means from now till 2024, on every workday that is filled up already. It means people have been given dates to come for an interview.
“I now asked how he got the information because I had also applied before. People that are applying are in a more difficult situation except on medical and academic grounds. So, it has now got to the point that they have a kind of third party arrangement to sell their dates.
“So he told me that she has this agent who is planning to help them a buy date for someone for N600,000. I was surprised. So, before I talked about that information today, I got that information from a US Naval Officer here in Nigeria who said that he saw one for N300,000. He said he was trying to help someone to get a visa date in Abuja. He now sold the date for N600,000.”
According to him, he said the US Naval Officer told him the situation may be an arrangement between the Nigerian and American governments to discourage or limit the exodus of Nigerian youths travelling to US.
“A travel agent confirmed that if you check the website, you cannot find any date earlier than 2024. That was what the Naval Officer also said that both governments are trying to discourage people from travelling.
“I did not think it could be so bad that you now have dates filled up till 2024 from now. So, in my opinion, I think there is connivance between the two governments to frustrate people aspiring to travel. But, now they are just making money from people because people are paying money to buy interview date and they will tell you to go home after spending two minutes with you,” a victim stated.