Personas Non-Gratas in Nigeria

Yes. Incredible as it may seem, the Nigerians have decided that we are not welcome in their country.

When calling the Nigerian embassy in South Africa two months earlier, they assured us that we can apply for a Nigerian visa here.

“You must have spoken to the security guard,” said the unfriendly lady behind the bullet-proof glass in the Johannesburg consulate. Unfortunately, she was in charge of the visas that day.

“The security guard? Are you stupid?”

Like a captain for a football team, I had to pull Eduardo back. Arguing with a consular employee is never a good idea.

I tried to reason with her:
“I’m sorry, but we have bought tickets to Lagos based on the information we received from another employee here. Maybe there’s something you can do? Perhaps we can speak with your supervisor?”

“What? My supervisor would get very angry with me if I asked him about something so stupid.”

She wouldn’t budge. Eventually we gave up.

When exiting, the security guard offered to sell us visas for R4,000 (four times the actual price). So maybe the lady was right – perhaps it was really he who picked up the phone when we called, knowing he could make some extra cash.

The next day we also found out that Bellview Airlines, the airline we were supposed to fly to Nigeria with, had gone bankrupt.

Which means we’re not going to Nigeria.

End of story.



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