UK did not suspend student, other visa applications in Nigeria – British High Commissioner

The British High Commission, Wednesday, in a statement said it is not suspending student, work and family visas for Nigerian applicants.

This is following a misinterpretation of a previous release by the mission announcing the temporary suspension of priority services on visa application for students, work and family.

This is as a result of the UK’s decision to prioritise applications made under the Ukraine family scheme in response to the humanitarian crisis arising from the invasion of Ukraine.

“This is not true. It is still possible to apply for any category of UK visa in the usual way on and via our Visa Applications Centres (VAC) in Nigeria,” the statement said.

The Ukraine family scheme allows applicants to join family members or extend their stay in the UK. They will also be able to live, work and study in the UK and access public funds.

The High Commission added that Visa Application Centres (VACs) remain open and customers are welcome to apply for a standard visa of any category in the usual manner which includes student, family, work and visit visas.

However, due to a re-prioritisation of resources in response to the humanitarian crisis arising from the invasion of Ukraine, the UK has temporarily suspended its priority visa service.

“As our 15 March statement made clear, this temporary suspension only applies to the UKVI’s expedited, added-value ‘Priority’ and ‘Super Priority’ visa services. This suspension is to enable the UKs global visa operation to prioritise applications for the new Ukraine Family Scheme,” it added.

This decision to suspend priority visa services is also clearly stated on UKVI’s guidance page, which sets out the latest decision waiting times for visa applicants outside the UK.

The British High Commission in Nigeria will issue an updated statement the moment ‘Priority’ and ‘Super Priority’ visa services resume.

According to Tuesday’s statement, “customers with standard applications in study, work, and family routes may experience some delays in the processing of their application.”

“We are still currently unable to offer PV for visitor applications in Nigeria. Standard visitor visa applications are currently taking an average of six weeks to process.

The statement advised applicants not to visit VACs until they are invited; assuring that applicants will be contacted when their passport is ready for collection.

“Where there are extremely compassionate or compelling circumstances (for example, a medical emergency), UKVI may consider expediting specific cases. However, the bar for this is high and will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

“If a request is exceptionally urgent, applicants can contact UK Visas and Immigration for help. Please note that this is a chargeable service for overseas customers.” (Premium Times)