There are 446 Nigerians serving jail terms in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Nigeria’s ambassador to that country, Mohammed Rimi, has said.
Rimi noted this recently in a statement following reports of the execution of some Nigerians in the country.
According to him, these Nigerians are serving their terms for many crimes which include possession of hard drugs to engaging in robbery.
“Although there is no exact record of our citizens in the UAE, owing to the inability to register them on arrival, the number of Nigerians resident in the country is estimated at about 10,000. Out of this number, about 2,017 are students in various universities,” he noted.
“It is disheartening to state that 446 Nigerians are currently serving different terms in prisons across UAE on account of committing various crimes including possession and consumption of hard drugs and engagement in armed robbery.”
He, however, said that “In the spirit of forgiveness, tolerance and accommodation, the UAE government granted amnesty to all irregular residents in the country.
“In 2018, 5,774 standard passport were issued by the embassy, out of which, 3,164 were specifically issued during the amnesty programme.
“Further 1,346 emergency travelling certificates were issued to Nigerians to facilitate their return home.”
In addition, he noted that 5,021 Nigerians were given amnesty to live and carry out legal businesses in the country.