By Emman Ovuakporie & Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA—THE House of Representatives Committee on Diaspora Affairs has said it would invite Governor of Central of Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, Debt Management Office, DMO, the National Identity Management Commission, NIMC, and Ministry of Education to explain why most Nigerians studying abroad on scholarships were facing hardship.
The House Diaspora Affairs Committee also said it would invite the Amnesty Office to find out whether Nigerians studying abroad on its platform were being paid, in view of the fact that money was earmarked for their scholarships abroad.
This was the position of the Rita Orji-led Committee when a Nigerian businessman in South Africa reported to the committee the humiliation Nigerians were facing in the country.
Chairperson of the Committee, Mrs. Orji noted with regret the hardship Nigerian students outside the shores of the country were passing through, while foreign students in the country enjoyed conducive environment.
She said a lot of Nigerian students abroad had bombarded her committee with complaints, but expressed dismay that when an attempt was made to ascertain the actual number of Nigeria students abroad, the Ministry of Education claimed they did not have the actual figure.
According to her, the Ministry claimed to have only the number of Nigerian students on scholarships.
She said: “We are going to invite the authorities of the amnesty programme to find out whether Nigerians studying abroad are paid, especially Nigerians in Russia and other countries. We know that a lot of money was earmarked to pay them.
“We will be inviting the CBN, NIMC, the DMO and the Ministry of Education on Diaspora remittances. The DMO should explain the Diaspora Bond and why Nigerians abroad cannot go to school because of school fees and are now looking for menial jobs.”
The committee had recently threatened to drag the Ghanaian government to the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, Court, for compelling Nigerian businessmen to have a minimum of $1 million each before doing business in the country.
It also said it would hold public hearing and invite the Ghanaian Embassy in Nigeria to explain the reason behind subjecting Nigerians in Ghana to pay fees in US dollars, instead of the country’s official currency of Cedi and why Nigerian citizens in the country should be mandated to pay $120 non-resident card, as well as another huge sum to process resident permit.
Orji had wondered why the federal government would project Nigerians in bad light outside the country, when other countries, despite committing more atrocities, project their nationals in good light.