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International Day of People with Disability 2014
International Day of People with Disability (IDPWD) is a sanctioned United Nations day that aims to promote an understanding of people with disability and encourage support for their dignity, rights and well-being and is celebrated each year on 3 December. Increasingly, Australia’s aid and development programs are becoming inclusive of people with disability. Australia Awards Alumna, Hauwa Danmadami from Nigeria’s Bauchi State, is a prime example of how living with a disability need not stand in the way of ambition. Read her story here. Read more about how the Australia Awards are promoting inclusiveness for people with a disability here.
World AIDS Day 2014
Australia is proud of its leadership on the response to HIV and AIDS, contributing more than $1 billion over the last decade to tackle the disease. This includes through our Australia Awards Scholarships program, where Australian knowledge is being transferred to Nigerian doctors such as Dr Oluwakemi Akagwu to improve Nigeria’s response. Click here to read her story.
Dr Akagwu Oluwakemi
Australia Awards – boosting Nigeria’s agricultural transformation
With his Government focused on the country’s agricultural transformation agenda, Nigerian recipient of an Australia Award scholarship to study agriculture in Australia next year, Longinus Chukwuma Ejiogu, spoke last week of his good fortune. Read the full story here.
Nigerian recipients of Australia Awards prepare to study ‘Down Under’
The Australian Government has selected some 200 professionals from Nigeria and 21 other African countries to take up Australia Awards Scholarships at Masters and PhD level at Australian universities in 2015. In order to prepare the recipients to live and study in Australia, the Australian Government is hosting a three-day workshop in Abuja this week for the 18 recipients from Nigeria. Read the full text of the press release here.
The Australian High Commissioner to Nigeria Jonathan Richardson with the 18 Australia Awards Scholarship recipients from Nigeria at the farewell reception he hosted in their honour on 10 November 2014. Also present at the reception were representatives from the awardees’ institutions, the Nigerian Australia Awards Coordinating Authority, a number of alumni who have previously studied in Australia, as well as Australian Government representatives.
Australian Response to Ebola Outbreak in Nigeria and West Africa
The Australian High Commission in Abuja is glad to announce it has contributed $A 60,000 (approximately ₦ 8.7 million) to the Nigeria Ebola Virus Emergency Appeal launched by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).This contribution from the High Commission’s Direct Aid Program is in addition to the $A 18 million the Australian Government has contributed in response to this Public Health Emergency of International Concern. Read the complete media release from the High Commission here.
Australian Honorary Consul, Yaounde
The Australian Government has appointed Dr Diane Acha-Morfaw as Australia’s Honorary Consul in Yaounde, with jurisdiction throughout Cameroon. Dr Acha-Morfaw’s appointment acknowledges the value Australia places on its relationship with Cameroon. Dr Acha-Morfaw brings a wealth of experience as a lawyer, academic and human rights advocate to the position. As Honorary Consul, she will assist the Australian Government in promoting bilateral trade and investment linkages with Cameroon, maintain regular contact with the Australian community in Cameroon and give Australia greater ability to provide consular assistance to Australian citizens in Cameroon.
Details about the Australian Consulate in Yaounde can be found on the About Us tab.
Dr Diane Acha-Morfaw, Australia’s Honorary Consul with jurisdiction throughout Cameroon.
Australia Awards now open for Application
Applications for the latest round of Australia Awards Scholarships and Africa Fellowships are now open. Please see the Study in Australia tab for more details.
Launch of the Australia Alumni Association of Nigeria
Australian High Commissioner to Nigeria Jonathan Richardson was pleased to host the official launch of the Australia Alumni Association of Nigeria at the Australian Residence in Abuja on Thursday July 10 2014. With the assistance of the Australian Government, the Association was launched by a group of former beneficiaries of the Australia Awards program but is open to all Nigerians who have studied in Australia. The Association encourages collaboration and provides networking opportunities for Alumni in Nigeria, Australia and internationally.
The Australian High Commissioner Mr Jonathan Richardson (centre) with some of the many Alumni who attended the launch
Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights in Nigeria
The Australian Government has been happy to work with the Leadership Initiative for Transformation and Empowerment (LITE) Africa to promote the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights in Nigeria. The Voluntary Principles are nonbinding and offer guidance to companies in maintaining the safety and security of their operations while ensuring respect for human rights and humanitarian law. Further information on the Voluntary Principles can be obtained at: http://www.lite-africa.org/
Second Secretary Tom Beamish (centre crouched) with participants at a LITE Voluntary Principles workshop in Port Harcourt.
Supporting community led sustainable development in Nigeria
The Australian High Commission is proud to be supporting the establishment of a community led sustainable development programme within the Omo and Oluwa Forest Reserves in Ogun and Ondo states. Working with Pro-Natura International, we are supporting four communities with the development of Community Development Plans and the establishment of Community Development Foundations to help drive their social and economic development and to promote conservation of the neighbouring forest reserves.
Second Secretary Tom Beamish (centre) with community leaders at the commissioning of a water project as part of the Community Development Plan for Lijoka, Ondo state.
Launch of Smartraveller business travel advice
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has issued a new Smartraveller business travel advice aimed at Australian businesses operating overseas.
The travel advice for business has been created to raise awareness of the importance of travel planning and risk management as an integral element in managing overseas travel, even for short visits to locations considered low risk. It aims to raise awareness of issues that employers should consider for short-term conference travel, longer-term overseas deployments and travel to high threat remote locations though illustrative case studies. The advice highlights a range of potential risks confronting businesses operating overseas, including from violent crime, cyber-crime, involvement in commercial disputes and fraud, extortion and bribery.
To access the Smartraveller business travel advice, please visit www.smartraveller.gov.au/business
Australia supports reading in FCT
The Australian High Commission is supporting children learning to read in the Nigerian FCT. Working with Afrigrowth Foundation, the High Commission funded the renovation of the library at the LEA Primary School in Bwari, as well as the provision of furniture and supply of over 200 books. Afrigrowth Foundation will also provide training to the librarian and English teachers to sustain the classroom reading activities. The project will benefit over 1000 children in the local area.
On 28 November, the Australian High Commissioner Mr Jonathan Richardson and Consular Officer Mrs Latonia Dabiri-Mpamugo attended a commissioning event for the project.
Australian education goes mobile with new official website
A new website makes it easier for students in Nigeria and other countries to plan their studies in Australia. Read the full text of the press release here.
Marrying in Nigeria
Please note the following guidelines on how to register a marriage in the Federal Republic of Nigeria under Nigerian law.
Expatriate residence permits
The Nigerian Immigration Service has provided information in relation to residence permits for expatriates in Nigeria. More details are available here.
Are you an Australian citizen or permanent resident travelling or living outside Australia?
We encourage you to register with us so that we can contact you in an emergency. Please see http://www.smarttraveller.gov.au for details and online registration. You can also register in person at the Australian High Commission, Abuja. Please don't forget to include your e-mail and mobile phone contact details.
International financial scams
International scammers continue to tempt people around the world with promises of lucrative rewards, usually in return for assistance in transferring vast sums of money. Read the Smartraveller Travel Bulletin.
Visa Scams and Warnings
Should you believe that you are the victim of a scam, you should report it to your local police and you may also wish to report it via the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's Scamwatch website.
Cruise Ship Employment Scams
The Australian Government is aware that clients in Africa have been targeted by unsolicited e-mails fraudulently offering employment from Australian cruise ship companies. Victims of this scam are defrauded of fees supposedly for visas or fictitious ‘foreign worker certificates’. It appears that the fraudulent e-mails originate from other countries, not Australia. The Australian High Commission is unable to verify employment offers from Australian companies. Job-seekers are. however, strongly advised to verify all job offers using publicly available contact details for the relevant companies. Information on applying for Australian visas is available on the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.
Internet Dating/Lonely Heart Scams
There have been a number of instances where Australian citizens and permanent residents believe they have formed relationships with persons from Africa over the internet, only to discover that the purported relationship is actually part of an on-going scam to defraud the Australian out of large sums of money, or to obtain permanent migration status in Australia. In some instances, persons have also experienced physical harm as a result of the actions of the criminal networks operating these scams.
We have received information that Australians sponsoring their fiancé or spouse to migrate to Australia have been asked to send large amounts of money to their partner, on the basis that this is required as part of the visa application process. Information on all relevant fees and charges associated with visa applications can be found here.
Any questions about the standard visa process (including associated costs), can be directed to the Visa Section of the Australian High Commission, Pretoria at the email address: email@example.com