The swift and proactive manner the Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government attended to the situation of Nigerians in Ukraine deserves an ovation.
According to the Buhari Media Organisation (BMO), with the escalation of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the Federal Government began to make adequate arrangements for the seamless evacuation of Nigerians from Ukraine to the neighbouring countries.
In a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, the group said it considered it as novel in the history of Nigeria’s diplomacy for the Federal Government to take proactive measures in safeguarding Nigerian citizens from war-torn regions of the world, or violence-prone areas.
“The closest to it was how Buhari’s administration carried out similar evacuations for Nigerians in South Africa during the xenophobic attacks against Nigerians.
“In the present circumstance, the Federal Government has successfully engaged some neighbouring countries with Ukraine, namely Poland, Hungary and Romania for the purpose of receiving Nigerians into their countries.
“These diplomatic engagements by the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs have led to the countries waiving the requirement of national passports or visas and other protocols to enable Nigerians fleeing from war-torn Ukraine to have safe access to their countries.
“Additionally, the Buhari administration is providing transportation and finance for Nigerians in Ukraine to move to the three countries, while the Nigerian embassies in the neighbouring countries have provided information about contact phone numbers and addresses to enable Nigerian citizens to contact the embassies for consular assistance.
“Also, the plan by the Buhari administration to start the immediate evacuation of Nigerians with two local airlines; Air Peace and Max Air is laudable, and goes a long way to show the patriotism and commitment of the administration to the well-being of Nigerians at home and abroad”.
BMO observed that this is the first time in the history of the country that Nigerian citizens are being accorded respect in the global community, and other countries now treat our citizens with dignity.
“We believe that the Buhari administration’s style of leadership has contributed immensely in restoring Nigeria as a respected member of the international community, and Nigerians are the ultimate beneficiaries”, the statement added.