US denies reports of new work visa for Nigerians

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THE US government has denied reports of a new type of work visa for Nigerians. The US Mission in Nigeria says that claims about a new US work visa for nationals of Nigeria are false. In a statement issued by the diplomatic mission, they denied claims made in a press release about a US work visa being offered to Nigerian citizens aged 40 – 55 years.

Sadly there are numerous scams relating to jobs and visas not just relating to US visas, but visas relating to other countries as well.  The scams frequently refer to visas that do not exist and fake jobs with unbelievably high salaries.  The documents typically provided by fraudsters are written in bad English.

In a post on Twitter, the US Mission Nigeria wrote: ‘Scammers and fraudsters are circulating a fake press release claiming to offer a new type of US work visa to Nigerian citizens aged 40 – 55.  It’s the same old scam, but in fresh packaging – don’t become a victim.’

The Mission is now calling on people to only visit official sources for information to avoid being scammed.

 High alert

Warnings about the fake press release come after the Office of Visa Services and the US Department of State advised the public to be on ‘high alert’ over a significant increase in fraudulent emails and letters sent to Diversity Visa applicants.

The US government has said that scammers behind such emails and letters posing as US immigration agencies are doing so in an effort to extract personal and payment details from US visa applicants.

Nigerian officials have warned Diversity Visa applicants to familiarise themselves with information about scams that can be found on the Federal Trade Commission website.

Nigeria and US visas 

In recent years, Nigeria has been hit with several US visa sanctions. In July 2019, access to US E1 and E2 visas for Nigeria was denied amid ongoing political turmoil within the African nation, while the country was also banned from the US green card lottery after exceeding the number of green cards issued to Nigerian nationals that qualified for the lottery.

Under the Trump administration several sanctions targeted denying Nigerians access to US B1 business visit visas, B2 holiday visit visasL1 intra-company transfer visasH1B specialty occupation visas, and other types of US visa.

Additionally, in February 2020, Nigeria was added to Trump’s controversial US travel ban imposed on mainly Muslim majority nations. The ban hit Nigerians harder than most as they were cut off from accessing US visas that could lead to permanent residency.

Biden has since rescinded the Muslim ban. However, the sanctions imposed by Trump came as a bitter blow, given that former Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said he was ‘optimistic’ that the US would be lifting existing restrictions imposed on the African nation. The ban has also created a huge backlog.

 

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