The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has described as arbitrary stigmatisation the recent travel ban imposed on Nigeria and some African countries by the United Kingdom and Canada.
The Forum said the decision by Canada and UK to hastily include Nigeria among the omicron present countries is unfair and discriminatory.
This was contained in a statement signed by the chairman of the Forum, Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State on Tuesday.
The UK had on Saturday announced that travellers from Nigeria would not be permitted to enter the United Kingdom from 6 December, due to the growing concerns over an outbreak of the omicron variant of coronavirus.
The announcement was made a few days after Canada extended its travel ban to travellers who recently visited Nigeria.
The British High Commission has also paused the issuance of visitor’s visas to citizens of countries on the United Kingdom red list, including Nigeria – until the travel ban is lifted.
As of Tuesday afternoon, six cases of the micron variant of the COVID-19 have been detected in Nigeria.
In the statement, the NGF said omicron still remains relatively unknown globally as it is not yet clear whether it is more transmissible from person to person compared to other variants including delta. It said a few other countries that have reported cases of omicron similar to or higher than Nigeria’s, have not been banned from entry to the UK and Canada.