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The United States embassy in Nairobi has responded to complaints by Kenyans about delays in getting visa appointments.
Terming the delays as a worldwide problem caused by a backlog resulting from the Covid-19 health and safety measures, the embassy said plans are underway to restore normalcy.
"Due to COVID-19 health and safety measures, nonimmigrant Visa interviews at U.S. Embassy Nairobi ceased for over a year. The Embassy restarted interviews at full capacity in February 2022. This is a worldwide problem that U.S. embassies are diligently striving to address," the embassy said in a statement on Monday.
It added: “As we work through the backlog of applications and address the high demand for services, we recognize that some applicants may face extended visa interview wait times.”
The embassy further indicated that the first available dates for a visitor visa appointment in Nairobi at the moment are in June 2024.
“U.S. Embassy Nairobi recognizes the significant challenges and frustrations this poses for Kenyans planning to visit the United States for business and tourism. Since resuming operations, U.S. Embassy Nairobi has doubled the number of daily interviews and will continue to add additional staff and increase capacity over time,” it said.
“The U.S. Embassy will continue to take all possible steps to reducing visa interview wait times as quickly as possible.”
On the request to have applicants who fail to get a visa refunded their money, the embassy emphasized that fees would not be refunded and that Kenyans should make informed decisions before submitting their application and paying the associated fees
The embassy also highlighted some of the measures it has put in place to address the current delays, including instituting a Visa renewal process that will not require an in-person interview for certain applicants.
"Kenyans renewing visitor (B1/B2 category) or student Visas (F category) whose visas expired less than one year ago may be eligible to renew without an interview," read the statement.
Expedited appointments will be made for emergency situations such as "the death of an immediate family member, the need to travel for urgent medical care, and students whose program begins in less than 30 days and who will suffer irreparable harm."
Govt policy crap. Dept of State has to make that call. USA wants to maintain its superpower status. Info and withholding info is power
These people are just RUDE! You make all the preperations
necessary for these interviews, you are called to the counter and you are dispatched in about 45 seconds with the quip that "You did not qualify to go to America" and then you can not reapply until after 2 years
The Embassy's response is wnting.
@D. Musa. The interview abruptly stops and a quick dismissal follows and ALAS! Your money is gone. This is an embassy that self finances using money from struggling people. Why don't they at least refund half of the money. If goods and services are not delivered there should be a refund.
Wakikuyu husema watu hufananishwa na nguo tu kila mtu ana shida zake. Some of us are tired of living in the US and can't wait to go back home and others will do anything to come here.
Guys it’s called Corruption big time.If I was to b the Kenyan president today I will make them return 1/2 of the monies back within 2 days if ur denied visa period or I shut the dammm Corrupt Embassy.Guys if u knew how those countries are u will work a little harder to remain hapa nyumbani.Not all that glitters is Gold.U wonder why some Jungus want to remain in Kenya??Hapa nyumbani maisha ni raha bana.Don’t go to practice modern slavery hii fake Majuu.Mimi nilikuwa huko more than 10 yrs n I got back 4 years ago but how I wish I could have come earlier.
The ambassador is still avoiding one issue, that's wholly under his control: Informing the applicants of the available visa date before they start the tedious visa application process. We all need current information in our decision making process and scheduling is very important.