By Emmanuel Nduka
Nigerian professionals residing in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have embarked on an ongoing online narrative campaign to appeal to the work permit restrictions placed on Nigerians by the UAE Government.
This was disclosed by President of the group, Professional Nigerians in UAE, Kayode Ogungbohun, while he appeared on Channels Television programme, Sunrise Daily on Monday.
According to Ogungbohun who led the ‘IamNigerian Campaign’, the restriction may be a response to the unlawful behaviour of some Nigerians resident in the UAE, and this it was an opportunity for Nigerians to caution one another and to project a positive image for Nigeria in the UAE.
While urging the UAE to remove all restrictions placed on all job categories in the country, he urged Nigerians in the UAE to obey the laws of the country.
“We saw the problem, although we don’t have any official reason why UAE took the decision. We speculated that some things were done by Nigerians in terms of not obeying the law of the host country.
“So, we came up with the solution to speak to ourselves to be law-abiding, to appeal and pacify the UAE government to allow all categories of jobs to be given to Nigerians. Because these jobs that they are not giving to Nigerians are being given to people of other nationalities.
“The #iamNigerian campaign is aimed to project us positively. Nigerians are now aware that there is a problem in our hands. We have left the stage of denial and realised that there is a problem, and it is everyone’s responsibility to play a role,” he explained.
A large number of Nigerians who travel to the UAE have become illegal migrants upon expiration of their visa and work permits. Many of such have become jobless and homeless due to the abrupt change in diplomatic relations of Nigeria with the UAE.