top of page
  • Detained in Dubai

Dubai’s ugly mass expulsion of Africans


Nigerian expats face difficulties in the UAE

Dubai’s ugly mass expulsion of Africans


The arbitrary and discriminatory labour and immigration policies of the United Arab Emirates towards Nigerian citizens, as well as the mass expulsion of Nigerians from the country, serves as a stark reminder that the UAE is unapologetically authoritarian and defiant of international norms on human rights.


Visa rules stipulate as of 2021 that no Nigerian men under the age of 30 will be granted work visas in the UAE, and untold hundreds have been forcefully detained in raids over the past year and expelled from the country. As recently as last month, the UAE was continuing to round up young Nigerian men and conduct mass deportations; even though many of the men had entered the UAE via employment agencies which promised to secure them jobs. The policies have ensnared not only Nigerians, but Ghanaians and Ugandans as well. They have had their bank accounts closed, existing visas revoked, and rental contracts nullified.


Allegedly, the hiring restrictions and expulsions were a response to criminal acts committed by individual Nigerians; however, crimes are committed in the UAE by every nationality, every race, and every colour; yet similar polices have not been imposed upon others. “If an individual commits a crime,” said Radha Stirling, CEO of