Tit for tat : Nigerian Reps seek repatriation of Chinese

April 28, 2020
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<!– Speaker, House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila –>

Speaker, House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila

Members of Nigeria’s House of Representatives on Tuesday said they will investigate the legality of Chinese nationals living in Nigeria for possible repatriation to their country.

The Reps made the resolution on Tuesday at their plenary following their return from five-week recess amid outbreak of coronavirus in the country.

The motion was sponsored by 10 lawmakers – Benjamin Kalu, Yusuf Buba, John Dyegh, Babajimi Benson, Tunji Olawuyi, Zakari Galadima, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, Nnoli Nnaji, Dennis Idahosa, and Tolu Shadipe.

This followed the poor treatment of Nigerians in China, especially those living in Guangzhou.

During the plenary presided over by the Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, the lawmakers considered a motion on the “Maltreatment and Institutional Acts of Racial Discrimination against Nigerians Living in China by the Government of China”.

The lawmakers mandated the House Committees on Interior, Nigeria Content Development and Monitoring, as well as Commerce, to take up the assignment.

The House asked the committees to investigate the Nigeria Immigration Service, Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Nigerian Content and Development Monitoring Board, and any other relevant Ministry, Department or Agency (MDA), to check the validity of all immigration documents of every Chinese national in Nigeria.

It further ordered the committees to probe the expatriate quota of all Chinese businesses in Nigeria to ascertain the number of illegal and undocumented immigrants in the country and ensure they were repatriated to China to regularise.

The lawmakers said  this would be in collaboration with the Immigration, Nigeria Customs Service, the CAC, and relevant MDAs.

The House of Representatives also resolved to urge the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and all relevant MDAs to ensure that all categories of Nigerians who wished to return home were evacuated from China and quarantined upon arrival.

The lawmakers urged the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice and all relevant MDAs to provide necessary financial and other assistance to affected Nigerians who wish to seek redress in any local or international court for breach of fundamental rights, loss of property or any other actionable cause occasioned by their maltreatment or discrimination in China.

Channels TV reports that the lawmakers asked the Committees on Inter-Parliamentary Relations, Foreign Affairs, Human Rights and Diaspora, to ascertain the extent of violation of rights of Nigerians in China, as well as losses arising from such maltreatment.

The lawmakers with the various responsibilities were asked to report back within two weeks for further legislative action.

The House, however, sought the concurrence of the Senate on the motion.

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