saudi arabia arrests 800 nigerians, fg reacts
The Saudi Arabian government arrested and detained about 800 Nigerians for various offences, the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission said on Friday. A number of irregular migrants were arrested for labour-related offences, including violations of residency rules, illegal border crossing attempts, and violations of residency rules.
A statement by the commission’s Head of Public Relations, Gabriel Odu, said the Saudi authorities, in its communication to the Federal Government, indicated that 45,458 illegal migrants were in its country, which prompted the need to get rid of the undocumented foreigners. It was reported that the exercise took place between October and December 2022.
To ensure proper documentation, the Federal Government has urged Nigerians traveling to the country.
In the statement, NiDCOM urged Nigerians not to travel to Saudi Arabia without proper documentation, as Saudi authorities have tightened their clampdown on irregular migrants. About 800 Nigerians have been arrested and detained since October 2022 by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for various offences, particularly consular issues.
Although the Nigerian Embassy in Saudi Arabia is intervening in the matter, NiDCOM urges Nigerians to respect other countries’ laws.
According to the statement, the President, Muhammadu Buhari (retired.), also requested the President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, to lift the blanket visa ban on Nigerians. “The commission has appealed to Nigerian citizens that if they must travel, they should do so legally and with proper documentation,” it said.