Nigeria and South Africa have Okayed an agreement on issuing 10-year visas to academics, businessmen and frequent travellers.
This agreement was reached after the conclusion of the 9th Bi-National Commission of South Africa and Nigeria meeting in Pretoria, South Africa, which was raised to the level of heads of state of both countries.
According to a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President-Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, explained that the agreement was reached during a meeting co-chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari and President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa.
Shehu noted that this was the first time both Presidents would preside since the elevation of the Bi-National Commission.
He said, “The decision was taken to encourage more people-to-people contacts among citizens of both countries and further strengthen socio-cultural, economic and political relations.
“At the meeting held at the Union Buildings, Presidential Palace of South Africa, the two presidents agreed on early warning signals to nip violence in the bud before it escalates, while taking into consideration the need to share more intelligence and promote stronger partnership in security.
“Both countries also agreed to re-establish the consular forum, which is a structured arrangement where both governments meet regularly, at least twice in a year, to discuss the welfare of citizens.
“The Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, and the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, signed the minutes of the 9th session of the Bi-National Commission.”
During a visit to Pretoria to improve relations between Nigeria and South Africa following xenophobic attacks on Nigerians and other Africans, President Buhari urged Nigerians living in South Africa not to forget home.
He termed as embarrassing the recent xenophobic attacks on Nigerians and foreigners by South Africans, urging Nigerians in the Diaspora to always remember their country with skills, resources and talents.