The Honourable Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Geoffrey Onyeama on Wednesday 22nd April, 2020 spoke in response to questions about the possibility of the Nigerian Government increasing the numbers of evacuees from 200 to 500 Nigerians stranded abroad to make the evacuation faster and ease their financial challenges.-
The Minister said “We took medical advice and asked what was possible and the figure we were given was 200 for Lagos and 200 for Abuja, of course this is much less than the numbers that are waiting to come back but we are constrained by the facilities that are available.
We have the internal challenges because the figures are going up as well, so we have a great responsibility to ensure these facilities are available to deal with the immediate challenges we are facing back home.
But if opportunity presents itself and we find that more facilities become available, then of course we would look at the possibility of expanding and increasing the number of people that we can bring back home.
In terms of the timeline of evacuations, we had hoped to have started evacuations already, but we have huge numbers all around the world and as such a delicate exercise. So we just want to get everything right in evacuating Nigerians who want to come back home as quickly as possible”.