The United States Mission has said Nigeria is not included in the US’ pilot visa bond programme.
The US Mission in Nigeria made this known in a statement on its website on Tuesday.
The outgoing administration of US President Donald Trump had issued a new temporary rule for African tourists.
The new rule could require tourist and business travellers from some countries, most in Africa, to pay a bond of as much as $15,000 to visit the United States.
The US State Department said the temporary final rule, which takes effect December 24 and runs through June 24, targets countries whose nationals have higher rates of overstaying B-2 visas for tourists and B-1 visas for business travelers.
The statement read, “In response to the April 2019 Presidential Memorandum on Combating High Nonimmigrant Overstay Rates, the Department and our embassies and consulates overseas conducted an in-depth analysis to identify and address root causes of overstays.
“Among other efforts to address this challenge, the State Department is considering additional steps to address overstays, including piloting a limited visa bonds program to test, in coordination with the Department of Homeland Security, the operational feasibility of posting, processing, and discharging visa bonds as means to ensure the timely departure from the United States of certain travelers.
“Accordingly, the State Department will begin a limited six-month visa bond pilot program beginning on December 24, 2020.
“We are committed to combating visa overstays and making sure travelers to the United States respect our laws.
“The implementation of this pilot builds on our engagement with foreign governments in recent years and will ensure continued progress to reduce overstay rates. Nigeria is not included in this six months pilot program.” (The Punch)