The United States embassy has announced an immediate indefinite suspension of interview waivers for visa renewals for applicants in Nigeria. Known as “drop-box,” the interview waiver process allowed Nigerian applicants who met certain eligibility criteria to renew their visas by submitting their passports and supporting documents for review without going through a new in-person interview each time. With the new waiver suspension, all applicants—first time and recurring—will now be required to appear for in-person interviews at US embassies in Nigeria. The suspension also comes one month after news that Trump administration has been considering new immigration measures to impose visa restrictions on countries whose citizens have a track record of overstaying beyond the validity of their short-term US visas. Nigeria accounted for the third highest number of US visa overstays last year. The proposed measures included reducing visa validity periods, making it tougher for citizens from countries like Nigeria to receive visas at all and the long-term possibility of outright bans.
SOURCES: QUARTZ AFRICA