The outgoing British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright, has cautioned Nigerians seeking visas to the UK to avoid presenting forged documents.
Speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, Mr Arkwright warned that anyone caught flouting the rule would be denied entry into the UK for at least 10 years.
“I know there is a feeling in Nigeria that we refuse visas more often than we accept them. That is not the case.
“We are not trying to keep Nigerians out but it is important Nigerians stick to the rules when they are there in the same way that you in Nigeria would expect British people to obey the rules here.
“Sadly, there are a few Nigerians who provide forged documents. We know when a document is forged and that is an automatic 10-year ban.”
According to the envoy, Nigerians are welcome in the UK, as some Nigerians living there are making very serious contributions to the British economy and other sectors.
He said that the British High Commission received about 80,000 visa applications annually, adding that about 70 per cent of those applications were successful.
He said that 90 per cent of visa applications were from students wanting to study in the UK.
Mr Arkwright further advised those seeking visas to apply “in good time’’ and also ensure they had the required documents ready.
He stressed that it was important for an applicant to have sufficient funds in their bank accounts which should have been in the account for a minimum of 28 days.
The British High Commissioner noted that the visa application was an online process and the High Commission was “working hard to streamline the process’’.