The United Kingdom (UK) government has concluded plans to announce new restrictions that will most likely stop Nigerian students and other nationalities studying in the country from bringing their families over. This appears to be a major crackdown on foreign students by the UK authorities, as there are concerns over the high influx of migrants. According to an exclusive report by The Sun UK, the crackdown which will be announced later this week will see all masters students and many other postgraduate students banned from bringing their family over.
PHD students exempted
The report, however, stated that the ban will not apply to PHD students, whose courses usually last between 3 and 5 years and are very highly skilled. It also pointed out that net migration into the UK has skyrocketed to 1 million with Tory MPs asking the Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, “to get a grip on the rocketing numbers.” To get a hold of the climbing numbers, UK ministers are said to be expected to announce the immigration clampdown on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Explosion of immigrants into UK
The report stated that Rishi Sunak is expected to come out fighting on immigration – pointing out they are figures he inherited, as they date back to the year ending December 2022, just 2 months after he became PM.
The Tory MP said, “There has been an explosion in the number of people coming to Britain piggybacking on their relative’s student visa. “Students brought 135,788 family members to Britain last year – nine times more than in 2019. “Last year, 59,053 Nigerian students brought over 60,923 relatives.” “We have got to get a grip.’’
What you should know
Recall that in February 2023, there were reports that the UK government was considering banning foreign students from bringing their spouses and children to the United Kingdom unless they study “high-value” degrees. Degrees considered important to the UK government include science, maths, and engineering The report states further that the UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Suella Braverman, the home secretary, are becoming more concerned after a near-eightfold rise in the number of family members joining foreign students.
In 2022, Nigerians accounted for the highest increase in the number of dependants accompanying persons with study visas for the year. Nigerian nationals also accounted for the largest increase in sponsored study grants compared with 2019, increasing from 57,545 (+686%) to a record high of 65,929, making them the third largest nationality group in the latest year.
The Times reported that the new immigration figures revealed that 490,763 students were given visas last year. They were accompanied by 135,788 dependants — spouses and children –up from 16,047 in 2019. However, universities and members of parliament from all parties criticized the proposals, pointing to research suggesting that foreign students contribute £35 billion a year to the economy.