UK visa bond: It is a big insult to Nigeria, we are not criminals – Oba of Lagos

at 2-07-2013 01:43PM (6 years ago)

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The Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu, has said that the decision by authorities of the United Kingdom to collect 3,000 pounds deposit for visa by Nigerian travellers was unfortunate and embarrassing.

The Monarch described the proposed directive as a big insult to the country.
He spoke in Lagos at the opening ceremony of a five-day workshop on Corporate Fraud, organised by the Police Special Fraud Unit in collaboration with the City of London Police.

“It is unacceptable to us as a nation. We will not take it, he said.
“It is a big insult on us for Britain to demand 3000 pounds before we can go to London. We are not criminals.”

Speaking on the menace of corruption, Akiolu said the fight was the responsibility of all Nigerians, calling on the federal government to release the reports of some major probe on corruption, including the Halliburton scandal.

Declaring the workshop open, Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, identified lack of strict enforcement of the law as a factor aiding corruption.

The lawmaker who stated that looting of public funds was a threat to humanity, lamented that only the poor were found in Nigeria’s prisons, while influential individuals go free and enjoy their loot.
He said: “Wrong value is what corruption breeds. It encourages overnight millionaires, suggesting that hard work doesn’t pay.

“Some people are encouraging corruption in the society by giving chieftaincy titles and honour in churches to corrupt persons.”

“For corruption to be checked, there should be creation of job opportunities, good business environment for big and small businesses to strive, provision of electricity and ICT introduction for crime detection.”

The senator called for law reforms and restructuring of the police and law enforcement.

The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, represented by DIG Peter Gana, admitted that Corporate Fraud was a difficult crime to prevent.

“With the creation of effective policies, a system of checks and balances and physical security, a company may limit the extent to which fraud can take place.

“Corporate Fraud is considered a white collar crime and the gate keepers in the financial market can perform better if properly equipped with modern tool of prevention,” he said.

The Commissioner in charge of the SFU, Tunde Ogunsakin, said that the workshop was a follow up to the last edition in 2012, expressing the hope that it will create a format for crime prevention and control in banks and other financial institutions.

The year’s workshop is on the theme: Corporate Fraud: Insider Abuse in financial Institution and the Implication on Developing Economy.

The British Deputy High Commissioner, Peter Cater, explained that the 3000 pounds visa issue was a pilot scheme and Nigeria may not be affected by the policy.

Cater said: “If Nigeria is involved, it will be just few individuals we regard as highest risk that would pay the money.
“There is no final decision yet on the matter. We want to continue to do business with Nigeria.

“I encourage any one interested in going to the UK to apply for visa in good time with all documentation.”