Minister of aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika has accused the United Arab Emirates (UAE) of adopting double standards in enforcement of its COVID-19 protocol for visitors, saying the government just decided to prevent Nigerians from travelling straight from the country to Dubai and other cities.
Speaking at the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19 briefing in Abuja, the minister said the COVID-19 protocol set for Nigeria was not the same as what the Arab nation announced for other nations in spite of the achievements recorded in the fight against the virus in the country.
According to him, investigations revealed that the protocol set for the country was different from other West African nations and this is the reason many Nigerians now travel through the country’s neighbours, Benin Republic and Ghana airports.
“Nigeria has no issue with Emirates, rather against the preferential treatment that the UAE government gave to other countries aside from Nigeria,” he added.
Recall that the UAE government allowed other countries including Benin Republic and Ghana citizens to travel directly from their country to its commercial capital, Dubai, as against Nigerians.
Meanwhile, the secretary to government of the federation (SGF) and chairman of PSC on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha said the federal government would continue to dialogue with the representatives of the UAE.
Mustapha stated that the dialogue would be centred on resolving the issue of the Emirates flights movement of passengers between Nigeria and the UAE.
According to him, the protection of the interest of Nigerians remains the primary focus.