Talk about taking it all the way down to the wire! It’s just over 24hrs from when we have to be at the airport for our flight to Sweden, and the French Embassy here in N’Djamena, the ones processing Darfur United players’ visas, have not been able to tell us where we are at with them. It’s frustrating because we don’t know what is happening or how we could help in putting pressure wherever pressure is needed. So, we just keep putting pressure everywhere we can!
We have put out a call to all friends we think might be able to advocate for Darfur United, hoping that someone—or a combination of many—can hit the right pressure point in Sweden or the French Embassy to expedite the team’s visas.
We had been told at the Embassy that the visa application should be pretty straightforward—and processed in one day. When they saw the travel documents Chad issued for the refugees, they said that they are not exactly passports, so it could take longer. They would ask permission from Sweden to move faster, but they could not guarantee that it will happen. The Chadian agency that issued the travel permits tells us that they are exactly the same thing as passports, and there should not be an issue. They told this to the Embassy.
Not too long ago, Sara-Christine e-mailed the visa office at the Embassy, and they said that it would take 24hrs to know what’s happening. No other information was given.
Nerve-wracking to say the least. This whole trip has been pretty intense, so I can’t say that this latest stressful adventure is a big surprise. The good: we have great friends that have sent out requests.
The bad: the unknown. If you are someone we haven’t reached out to and know someone in very high places in France, Sweden, or the French Embassy here in Chad, it would be wonderful to hear from you!
If you don’t have friends in high places, all the good vibes possible would also be great!