By Adesina Wahab
The National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS, has raised the alarm that Nigerians studying abroad are being frustrated due to the scarcity of Form A to procure foreign exchange for their transactions.
Speaking on Saturday, the National Vice President, External, NANS, Comrade Akinteye Afeez, appealed to the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to probe how commercial banks in the country are giving out the form for people to get forex.
Afeez noted that Nigerian students abroad were being exposed to embarrassment and suffering
“Many Nigerian students in the diaspora have come under colossal embarrassment, attack and humiliation by the actions and inactions of our Nigerian banks due to the way the Form A payment application is being utilized. It’s high time that everyone concerned came together to give this menace a lasting solution once and for all.
“The Form A is an application form designed by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to pay for service transactions. This allows customers to make payments for services such as school fees, technical fees, airline tickets, BTA and the like. The Nigerian students studying abroad or intending to do so are forced to use this application as their only form of transaction to pay their school fees and get other things done via Forex
“Instead of seeking Forex through the black market, they enjoy the official rate with Form A through our commercial banks. This Form A has now become a nightmare because it has stopped solving their problems but rather aggravated them year in and year out.
“The office of the Vice President, External Affairs, NANS, has been duly notified that Form A is no longer tenable and useful for the students in the diaspora due to the level of fraud and corruption going on in our Nigerian banks. This is because whenever these students abroad demand Forex, our Nigerian banks give them at black market rates, which is not affordable for many of these students.
“Let’s not forget that many of these students studying abroad are there on all sorts of scholarships. This implies that they are not financially buoyant enough and this skyrocketed (black market) rate of Forex has debarred many from doing what they intend to do financially and this has caused them to drop out or withdraw their studentship due to lack of fund. Recently, some Nigerian students at Hull City University, United Kingdom, lost their scholarship. Some lost their admission and they were deported to Nigeria as a result of this.”
Afeez called on the CBN to be more proactive in checkmating the activities of Nigerian banks in the abuse of the Form A option and the ridiculous rate of Forex.
He called on Nigerian students studying abroad to always speak out as soon as issues like that crop up.