Premium Times (Abuja)

Nigeria: British High Commission Clarifies Online Payment for Visa By Nigerians

The British High Commission in Nigeria said on Friday that Nigerians with naira credit or debit cards could pay for visas using their naira accounts.

The Commission, which made the clarification in a statement, said though the visa fee would be denominated in dollars, the payment would be deducted from the applicants' accounts in naira; and therefore there was no need for anyone to have a dollar account.

The statement by the Communication Manager in the Office of Deputy High Commissioner, Wale Adebajo, said, "Earlier this month, the UK introduced compulsory on-line payments for visas and announced that the cost of those visas would be denominated in US dollars.

"This is purely an accounting measure, As before, Nigerians with naira credit or debit card can pay for visas using their naira account.

"Although the visa fee will be denominated in dollars, the payment will be deducted from their account in naira. There is no need for anyone to have a dollar account."

The Commission had earlier in the month announced a new system of visa application requiring Nigerians who intended travelling to the U.K. to make payment on-line in U.S. dollars.

A statement signed by its Press and Public Affairs Officer, Rob Fitzpatrick, said the new system would commence on December 16, 2013.

"From December 16, 2013, all applications for UK visa must be completed using our on-line application system and paid for online in US dollars," the statement said.

"Payment can be made using a verve debit card, Visa or MasterCard credit or debit cards or the e-wallet PAGA. The move to online application and payment will deliver a streamlined process. It is consistent with wider global trend to online transactions and payments."

It also explained that the new system met the requirements of the U.K. Government's Digital by Default Initiative.

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