The planned evacuation of Nigerians from South Africa has been delayed by at least six hours by authorities in that country.
The returnees were initially billed to arrive Nigeria at 2:00pm on Wednesday but the time was shifted to either 6 or 8:00pm.
An Air Peace Boeing 747 aircraft had in the evening of Tuesday departed the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, for the evacuation of 317 Nigerians in the first batch but information gathered by reporters indicated that the South African Immigration Services delayed the flight due to profiling.
As at the time of filing this report, it was not clear if the Nigerians had departed the former apartheid nation.
Chairman of Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, told journalists at the Lagos Airport that South African Immigration Services had insisted on conducting another round of documentation on the returnees.
She said the situation had led to the delay in the take-off of the aircraft billed for evacuation early yesterday morning.
On arrival, she said the returnees would be profiled and given stipend in the form of transport fares to their final destinations.
She further stated that the government had mobilized the Bank of Industry to work out skills acquisition and other social intervention programs for interested returnees.