The Diversity Immigrant Visa program, also known as the green card lottery, is a United States congressionally mandated lottery program for receiving a United States permanent resident card. The Immigration Act of 1990 established the current and permanent Diversity Visa (DV) program. The lottery is administered by the Department of State and conducted under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) as amended by the Immigration Act of 1990. The lottery makes available 50,000 permanent resident visas annually and aims to diversify the immigrant population in the United States, by selecting applicants from countries with low rates of immigration in the five years prior. Currently, countries that have sent 50,000 or more immigrants to the US in the previous five years are not eligible.
Below is a list of countries that cannot enter for the 2019 lottery:
- China (mainland born)
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- South Korea
- United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories
The policy has been the same and did not start with the current US president, Donald Trump. In 2013, a similar announcement was made affecting a number of countries.
Jitten Vyas, the chief operating officer of VFS Global in Africa, on Thursday, September 21, announced that about 200,000 Nigerians applied annually for visas to various countries through his organisation. Vyas made the announcement at the official inauguration ceremony of the Chinese Visa Application Service Centre in Victoria Island, Lagos. According to him, many Nigerians always apply for visas to travel to different countries of the world for leisure, studies and business trips. He said: “Let us say that we have about 200,000 Nigerians applying for visas through the VFS offices in Abuja and Lagos annually.”