This is a timeline of how foreign nationals are being evacuated from Nigeria since the COVID-19 pandemic re-arranged global realities and human priorities.
On Friday, February 28, the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, told us an Italian had brought coronavirus, the virus responsible for COVID-19, to Nigeria.
Since that day, our lack of basic amenities and infrastructure, indecision or compromise and the insidious nature of every single act of corruption are being exposed.
More engaging is the possibility of underlying reason(s) countries ravaged by COVID-19 are in a rush to remove their citizens from Nigeria that is relatively “safe.”
Is it that these citizens prefer to die in their homelands? Are they considering the lack of appropriate health facilities in Nigeria or these foreign governments foresee COVID-19 ravaging Nigeria?
The last point would be most likely given the unexplainable deaths in the northern parts of the country. Oh, it’s a timeline:
*Exactly a month after the index coronavirus case on March 29, Israel took home 274 Israelis
*On April 6, 200 Canadians were evacuated
*Same April 6, 385 Americans left for home
*Total number of foreigner evacuated April 7 through Lagos airport was about 1,739, that is;
*Air France evacuated 399 French and European nationals
*Middle East Airline, MEA, 140
*Ethiopian Airlines, 148; 137 Canadians; 375 American
*Jed Air, nine
*Air Peace, 87 and
*Delta, 200 Americans
*April 8, 384 Americans
* April 12, 137 South Africans evacuated
* April 20, 213 British nationals evacuated
*April 22, 320 British nationals evacuated
*April 28, 185 UK airlifted home
*On May 1, another batch of 337 UK citizens were evacuated.
As you read this, more evacuation is ongoing. However, Nigeria will soon start bringing home citizens abroad.
But the speed and clinical disposition with which countries ravaged by COVID-19 are flying home their citizens should be amazing. Let’s hope it’s all for the best.