Travelling through Africa’s easier for an American an African citizen. Without a visa, the first can make on average in more countries than the second. A real paradox that we have already explained on Slate Africa. From this, it is easy to imagine that a Congolese or Tunisian who want to holiday in the northern hemisphere will face a wall.
In this summer period in Europe or North America, many African citizens fairly deep pockets to fly to other lands by plane – which is already a huge luxury in Africa – are confronted with the difficulty of obtain visas for countries that see in every South traveler, a potential migrant.
For the particular case of France, which is a major destination for tourists from Francophone Africa who want to visit relatives settled in France or simply discover the former colonial power that still has very many cultural and economic ties with his old “pre-squared”, the mission is difficult for applicants to tourist visas.
proof of accommodation in France
Consular services require very many and supporting documents, as well as significant financial income.
“To go to France, I had to provide proof of accommodation in France and the person who welcomed me had to prove it could support me financially with an amount of at least 32 euros a day. And for Senegalese who do not have an “international” profile, it’s almost impossible to leave “ , testifies Lala, a journalist in Dakar which was initially denied a visa to France during his last vacation the last winter.
Having sent his file to the Embassy with all the required documents, she was told that “the reasons for his visit were not clear” . Yet she had already visited France several times for business reasons. “It was unjust because I had already made trips and I was back.” After pushing the door of the consulate, she finally got the precious buffer to fly. But on one condition.
“They told me it was finally ok to leave, but I had to go to the consulate on my return, to prove that I came back. On my return I have not gone to the consulate, I had too much stuff to do, and I had no time to lose for that. They then threatened by phone never give me my visa so I do not replaying to confirm my return. I was forced to do so “ says Lala.
“I am demotivated by the pile of paperwork to provide”
I contacted the French consulate in Dakar for more information on their visa policy while outlining their case of Lala.
Here is their response:
“Most often the refusal to issue a visa is consecutive to the presentation of an incomplete file or fraud. Visa rate for 2015 was 71%, about 26,000 visas granted over 38,000 requests ! Note that the french Consulate in Dakar is the french position issuing more visas in the sub-region. the applicant also has the option to appeal if the visa is not granted. “
Consular services does not keep specific statistics for tourist visas. “However, be aware that the majority of visa applications (and therefore of issued visas) concerning short-stay visas (less than 90 days) , including visas for tourism “ , says Aurélie Carlot of the Embassy of France in Dakar.
acceptance rate, it is much lower than the French who make a visa application for an African country – when requested them which is rare in French-speaking Africa – is not so drastic. But many documents requested by the French consulates discourage many citizens of the continent to make a request, which is not visible in the statistics.
A barrier in the colors of France in front of the French embassy in Cairo on 20 September 2012. KHALED DESOUKI / AFP
“We see the Europeans circulate everywhere without worry …”
“In fact in order to obtain a visa you need a certificate of work, paychecks last three months, a history of the CNSS (Social Security), a travel allowance with a minimum of 50 euros per day to book a hotel or accommodation made letter to the Prefecture of the host to which it also requires a lot of papers.
I went several times in France and I have never had a problem with a visa. But I regret to ask as many supporting documents to travel. When we see the Europeans circulate everywhere without worry, and that is prompted as much evidence to go to holiday in Europe, we say that there is still something wrong. If you do not have at a comfortable financial situation, you do not have the right to visit France and the Schengen area in general. Not to mention access to as much information about a person just waiting to enjoy their holidays “ , she says.
The lack of humanity of bureaucracy
There are also cases that face a bureaucracy that sometimes lacks humanity.
A Liberian woman of 17 who lives in Conakry, Guinea, wanted to join in the summer for three months his mother settled in Paris for several years. It is the guardian of the teenager who lives with her that notified the visa at the French consulate. “The mother was married and was in a complicated situation. She had the ability to not take that one of his two children in France “ , says a close case. ” the idea for his daughter, was to take him to France for her to see her mother, but she also consults for crisis epilepsy she suffers. Except that the embassy was asked if she asked a tourist visa or a medical visa. “ the girl replied that she request a medical visa and was examined by the doctor of the consulate. It clears the embassy but did not follow. The family filed an appeal, as she has the right, and is awaiting a response.
“The problem with the French administration is the mismatch between the real situation of visa applicants and what it requires” , says the family friend of the girl who helped the Liberian approaches.
Stories which link the frustration and anger, like this one, are endless on the continent. When we asked on Twitter, the responses have increased, a sign of “the injustice of the visa”.
Pire le visa ne garanti pas entrée sur le territoire: rétentions en zone d’attente à l’arrivée à CDG, y en a trophttps://twitter.com/SlateAfrique/status/752461164307701760 …
Source: Slate Africa