By JUSTINA OKPANKU
Nigerians are no longer eligible to participate in the America Diversity Visa lottery programme. Information from the United States Department of State sighted on Sunday said Nigerians and citizens from a few other countries are not eligible for DV-2015. The department said Nigeria was excluded since over 50,000 Nigerians had immigrated into the United States in the last five years.
Already, advertisements for the 2015 US DV lottery have started with several businesses, especially Cyber Cafe or business centres in the Lagos metropolis inviting Nigerians to apply for the programme for a few.
The department listed other countries not eligible as Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador and Haiti.
Others are India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.
Other Africans not affected and therefore continue to participate in the programme include Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Cote D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia and Ghana.
In the same vein, citizens of Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles and Sierra Leone are eligible.
It is gathered that diversity visas are said to be distributed among six geographic regions, while no single country could receive more than seven per cent of the available space in any year. Applications for the 2015 US DV lottery are expected to take off from October 1, 2013. In 2012, 14,769, 658 persons were said to have qualified worldwide for the US DV lottery among the 19, 672, 269 which applied.