The new president of the United States, Joe Biden has signed up to seventeen executive orders reversing the immigrant visa ban placed on Nigerians and some other Muslim countries by Donald Trump.
Trump’s administration had in February 2020 imposed the immigrant visa ban on citizens of Nigeria, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Eritrea, Venezuela, and Tanzania.
Trump cited Nigeria’s lack of a robust database as reason for the ban. During the time of the ban, the American Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary-Beth Leonard, said that Nigeria must improve on its data intelligence to ease the investigation of its citizens wishing to migrate to the US, if it wants the ban lifted.
In reason to the ban last year, the FG subsequently set up a committee on Citizen Data Management and Harmonisation, to address the complaints of the US which led to the recent push for all Nigerians to register with the National Identity Management Commission and obtain a National Identity Number.
“There’s no time to waste”. Biden said before signing the executive orders in the White House.
“These are just all starting points”. He added.
With Biden’s reversal of Trump’s order, Nigerians and some other affected countries will now be able to apply for green cards and stay permanently in the US if they so wish.
On Wednesday after his inauguration as the 46th president of the US, Biden started reversing Trump’s immigration policies, part of an aggressive push to roll back some of the most controversial actions of his predecessor and chart a new course for the nation.
President Biden signed the executive action ending restrictions on travel and immigration from some predominantly Muslim countries and directed the State Department to resume visa processing for those countries and develop a plan to address people affected, such as those who were denied entry to the US.
Biden also ordered reviews of other practices used by the Trump administration, while directing the US to improve information-sharing with foreign governments to bolster screening of travellers.
The 78-year-old is also proposing a sweeping immigration bill that would provide a pathway to citizenship for roughly 11 million people living illegally in the US White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Wednesday night that the president had sent the text of his proposal to Congress.
As part of his first day proclamation, Biden ordered an immediate stop to the construction of Trump’s wall along the border with Mexico, while rescinding the national emergency that Trump declared to secure funding for the wall.
The new executive order is part of Biden’s campaign promises.