Nigerian citizens resident in South Africa have accused the Consul General of Nigeria in South Africa, Abdulmalik Ahmed, of extortion and deliberately treating them with contempt and total disregard to fellow compatriots.
In an open letter signed by Collins Mgbo, the president of Nigeria Union South Africa, he called on President Buhari, Minister of foreign affairs, Godfrey Onyema, Chairperson of Nigeria Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri, as well as Internal Affairs minister, Rauf Aregbesola to come to their aid in South Africa.
Full Letter below:
It has become unbearable after series of appeal had fallen on inconsiderate disposition of Your Excellency, The Consul General of Nigeria in Johannesburg South Africa. Our expectation of a break especially after the incidence of COVID-19 has been dashed because you are adamant on your quest to enrich yourself at the expense of vulnerable Nigerians but insensitive of the plight of your compatriots in South Africa. You have not just inflicted pains on Nigerians in South Africa but also brought ill-repute to the Government of Federal Republic of Nigeria. Your insensitivity to the appeal of Nigerians vis a vis excessive consular service charges and passport in particular has reached it’s crescendo and Nigerians in South Africa have had your knees on their neck for an unbearable time frame.
It is pretty embarrassing and unpatriotic that all you had in mind en-route to South Africa was how to plunder your compatriots whose interest you were meant to protect and propagate according to Nigerian foreign policy and National Diaspora Policy.
I would like to narrate your impious activities and treatment against Nigerians in South Africa vis a vis record consular service charges Nigerians have experienced since the inception of Diplomatic Relations between Nigeria and The Republic of South Africa. No Consul General in the past have inflicted such pain on Nigerians neither have we experienced such a militarized Diplomat as a Consul General who has no sense of empathy whatsoever with regard to the frustration and pain of Nigerians in South Africa.
Since your arrival in Johannesburg, you have initiated series of charges to amass wealth in an unprecedented manner leading to extortion of vulnerable Nigerians who are struggling to make ends meet under the scorching heat and sometimes, chilling winter of Southern African weather. Worst of all, you introduced most of these illegal extra charges during the hard lockdown periods of COVID-19. This is when government representatives all over the world were doing everything possible to minimize the suffering of their citizens but in your case, it was an opportunity to make millions which you did accumulate eventually but without contentment.
Nigeria Union South Africa(NUSA) have written to you time without number to put yourself in the shoes of some of these helpless Nigerians whom these charges has rendered illegal residents/ immigrants in South Africa leading to some of them giving up hope in the system out of frustration.
It is pertinent to highlight that only on your arrival that the following charges as would be summarized were imposed on Nigerians and when the Union expressed its concern over the negative impact of these charges on struggling Nigerians, you went on a media spree to scandalise the names of the leaders of The Union with the intent to shut our voices, but we are not deterred being that chief among our mandate is the welfare of Nigerians in South Africa, and if your charges and activities in general are detrimental to the welfare of Nigerians in the Republic, our duty demands that we seek for redress.
Unfortunately, our concern and humble plea in a series of letters fell on the inconsiderate conscience of a man who threatened to put an end to some of these services should we continue to express our concern any further.
These are some of the illegal charges you arrogantly imposed on Nigerians without considering the negative impact on the people.
1, Passport Validation (should one decide to apply for renewal prior the 6 Months official period due to some SA immigration reasons) R1,000.
- Lost Passport (extra R2, 000) apart from official government fees of passport reissue.
- Agent fees (R10, 000) Non refundable and renewable.
4. Extra Visa Charges of R750. 00
5. Birth certificate R150.00
- Extra administrative fee on Passport R120.00
- E.T.C R250.00
- Authentication R250.00 per page
We are using this platform albeit, to call on The Honourable Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, and The Honourable Minister for Interior Affairs, Mr. Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, The Chairperson, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Honourable Abike Dabiri Erewa and The Comptroller General of Immigration to kindly commence the process of dismantling these atrocious extortions. We also seek for an investigation of these charges and necessary disciplinary actions taken against the Consul General.
Mr. Abdul Malik Sir, you brought pain on us during your stay in South Africa so we pray that you do not repeat it on any Nigerian community anywhere in the world.’
Hon. Collins Thomas Mgbo
President, Nigerian Union South Africa