Mr. David Greene, the Chargé d’Affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria, made an interesting revelation on Sunday. According to him, a whopping 150,000 Nigerians have been interviewed by the embassy for US visas, and on top of that, there are also 30,000 applicants for student visas. In an interview held in Abuja with news correspondents, Greene emphasized the unwavering dedication of the mission to effectively address all obstacles concerning visas. He said, “When it comes to visas specifically, well of course it is a simple fact, the demand for visa appointments outnumbers the supply.”
He said that the embassy is actively working to fill the current vacancies by offering a wide range of available appointments. He also said that it is important for people to understand that their efforts to bridge this gap include conducting over 150,000 interviews with Nigerian individuals throughout the year. Furthermore, an additional 30,000 students have been included along with a vast number of students who have been given the chance to pursue U.S. visas.
Individuals should submit applications earlier.
Despite facing significant challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the embassy is diligently working towards finding suitable solutions for every applicant. The immense backlog that has accumulated will soon be addressed as they strive to provide optimal outcomes, says Greene. Despite the challenges, they have achieved significant advancements. In March, they implemented a policy that granted five-year validity to visas for travel to the United States. He encouraged individuals looking to journey to the United States to submit their applications well in advance and ensure that their visa requests were linked to specific occasions.
Furthermore, the Chargé d’Affaires said that it is advisable for individuals in need of visas to submit their applications well in advance and ensure that their intention is to attend a specific occasion. He expressed that their recognition of the existing backlog is the reason behind the commitment to ensure that individuals in need of a visa for the United States will receive one, as the embassy will take all necessary actions to achieve this.
A cause of this trend is what is known as the “japa” syndrome.
Originating from the depths of the Yoruba language, this particular phrase goes beyond linguistic confines and embodies a cultural occurrence that reflects the dreams, obstacles, and unwavering strength of an entire generation. Resonating across various social media platforms and deeply ingrained in Nigerian youth culture, japa has now become something greater than a mere term. It represents a subtle form of expression that encapsulates the relentless quest for improved prospects and the adept skill of strategic evasion.
The emergence of japa is intricately linked to the era of technology, where social media functions as a dual force – reflecting societal inclinations and propelling them ceaselessly. Within the digital realm, this phrase has discovered its own niche, effortlessly infiltrating public conversations through amusing memes, trending hashtags, and personal accounts recounting japa encounters. Unrestricted by physical boundaries or cultural limitations, japa has metamorphosed into a beacon of collective participation, transcending linguistic peculiarity to shape a cultural revolution in virtual spaces.
Mass emigration from Nigeria is not one-size-fits-all.
For many Nigerian youths, the decision to “japa” is a response to the challenges and limitations they face in their current situations. Economic hardships, political uncertainties, and social constraints are among the factors that drive individuals to consider the possibility of escape. The magnetism of the japa narrative captivates individuals with the promise of improved education, lucrative job prospects, or the freedom to forge their own path in life. Nevertheless, it is crucial to acknowledge that japa does not offer a universal solution. The choice to break free is deeply personal, moulded by individual circumstances, ambitions, and willingness to take risks. The diverse tapestry of the japa narrative includes tales of victory, obstacles, and the intricate emotions associated with leaving behind familiar surroundings for uncharted territories.
U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Nigeria: Website