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I’m a Nigerian student schooling in Nigeria. I have a wife who is also a Nigerian but a Canadian citizen as well. She lives in Canada. She’s a student too and has sent an invitation letter to me for her graduation and for winter. Now these are my questions: (1) I have suspended my studies for one year with an official suspension letter from my school to this effect. Do I still need any other letter of approval from my school? (2) We’re planning to apply for inland sponsorship when I get there and after my wife’s graduation. Am I likely to be given the visitor visa, considering my studentship status (without employment) and the fact that we’ve not applied for sponsorship already? Is it true visitor Visa is hardly granted to a student? (3) My wife works part-time and her entire family is based in Canada too. She and her mum (a citizen too) are the ones to take care of my living and flight costs for the journey. They’ve sent their proofs to me for the visa application. Is this acceptable, considering that I can’t provide a proof of capability to take care of myself? (4) In one of the application forms, I saw a column for “previous names used” under “nicknames or aliases” Please what’s the importance of this section? I once compounded my surname by adding one more name to it and then more given names to my first name. Is this meant to be stated under this section, considering it’s not a case of nickname or alias? (5)Can the change of name hinder me from getting the Visa? I have all the required official documents covering the change of name but my old credentials still contain the old name. Is this acceptable? At what point would I need to disclose this, since there’s no appropriate section for it on the form, apart from that for nicknames and aliases?

Let us try to answer your questions:

  1. Your suspension letter from your school should be usefulĀ if it indicates the date you will resume your studies. If it does not indicate this, you will need something else.
  2. It is true visitor visas are rarely granted to students. You’ll need more proofs of ties to your home country than just a letter saying you’re in school (lease/deed etc).
  3. Yes, it is fine that they pledge to pay for your trip. It’s normal.
  4. You need to include all legal names used so they can check up on you.
  5. It’s unlikely your name change will hinder your chances if you can show you and the other name are the same person. Always err on the side of disclosing too much rather than too little.
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