ONN CELEBRATES NIGERIA INDEPENDENCE DAY 2018 IN GRAND STYLE

The 2018 Nigeria independence day celebrated in grand style. A true reflection of the rich ethnic diversity in the Nigeria population. The event center hall filled to the brim with laughter and good feelings. The venue for the event, evening gala, was in Garland Texas.

Organization of Nigerian Nationals, an IRS 501(c)3 tax-exempt non-profit organization that was established in the early nineties for the primary purpose of connecting the Nigerian Community to the Dallas-Fort-worth community at large, hosted the event.

For almost three decades, Organization of Nigerian Nationals (ONN), has continued it’s patriot tradition of celebrating this auspicious occasion annually for the Dallas-Forth worth metroplex community, with a modest budget of about $5,000 (Five thousand dollars).

After the Star Spangled Banner had played in it glorious splendor, it was followed by the Nigeria national anthem. Our President Dr. Michael Umunna made his opening remarks, then introduced the dignitaries. Those present were Hon. Iwejuo representing the Consul General Atlanta; Mr & Mrs Anyiam, Mrs. Chika Anyiam is a candidate for Judge 304th District Criminal Court. Ms. Eno from Western Union that sponsored this event.

The evenings entertainment included cultural dance display led by Amaka Nwafor Orisakwe (Mrs.) and trivia on Nigeria by ONN vice President Ifeatu Onubogu (Mrs.).

NEW NIGERIAN CONSUL GENERAL IN ATLANTA VISITS DALLAS

ONN hosts the outgoing Consul Hon. Dapo Falowo and incoming Consul Hon. Kayode Laro.  The meet and greet holds at Murphy’s Mansion on Saturday, March 18, 2017 from 2:30 pm to 6:00 pm.

The Consuls met with the Dallas-Fort worth community, and intently listened to their various concerns. In response, Hon. Kayode Laro promised to address all concerns and issues expeditiously. As a result, we were glad and encouraged by his promise to keep his commitment.

This was the perfect opportunity to mingle and socialize because of the free bar and refreshments. I enjoy ONN events because of the free food, free drinks and good music.

PASSPORT INTERVENTIONS ARE BIG BUSINESS.

ONN Passport Intervention Poster
Poster used for a passport intervention hosted by ONN in 2017.

Passport interventions have become a necessary evil. Passport renewals are every five years. You can get a renewal at any one of three consulate offices serving the United States of America: New York, Atlanta and Washington DC. People travel, by air or road, hundreds of miles to get to one of these offices.

The consulate offices are close in observance of Nigeria Holidays. As a result, many travelers with passport service appointments are stranded because of failure to give the general public prior notice.

Root Cause Analysis

Passport interventions are now a big business. With a charge of $100 per person, you can easily generate $50,000 during an intervention. The saddest part of all this is, the poor service provided. Most people may not mind paying the fee in lieu of travel. The slow capture of biometric data by consulate officials using only one station, creates a nightmarish situation.

The consulate uses third parties to organize the intervention. Some third parties like ONN are more ethical than the others. Some complaints are that some people arrive at the intervention by 3 a.m. for three day period. They stay all day and still not get service. This adds insult to injury when officials refuse to give them refunds.

Their focus is on collecting money, and not on providing good service. The officials unscrupulously avoid accountability. They do not publish contact information or “no refund” on their flyers. They collect cash only and do not issue refunds when services are not provided.

Until the authorities get involved, there may not be an end in sight to this nightmare.

Conclusion

Last year 2019, the Nigeria government issued a directive that increase the passport validity to 10 years. The government now allows holders of foreign passports with “Nigeria as place of birth” to enter Nigeria without a visa. These two directives will help alleviate the excess demand for passport services in the United States of America.

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