NIS: Scarcity of international passports to end by March

January 3, 2022
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The Acting Comptroller General of Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Mr. Isa Idris, has said the backlog and the scarcity of international passports will end by March.

Idris, who spoke at a virtual media interactive session, said among the measures taken for clearing the backlog and curbing scarcity was the introduction of enhanced e-passports.

The NIS boss assured those experiencing difficulty in either renewing their international passports or securing new ones that they would be sorted as measures had been put in place to ensure availability of the document.

He attributed the challenge of delayed passports production to the coronavirus pandemic and the accompanying global lockdowns, including difficulty in accessing foreign exchange.

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“Just on Friday, we received a total of 45,000 booklets towards clearing the backlog. In December alone, we received more than 100,000 booklets, which we have continued to distribute across the passport centres nationwide.

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“This is not just for Nigerians in Nigeria alone but for those in the Diaspora as well and with the introduction of the enhanced e-passport. We are good to go in our efforts towards addressing the scarcity.

“This enhanced e-passport is a great improvement on the biometric passport technology which we adopted as a country in 2007.

“It is a strategic step towards curbing forgery, impersonation and other forms of fraud associated with obtaining travel documents under the old Machine Readable Passport regime,” Idris said.

According to him, technology helps to address some of the challenges, including corruption, and NIS has continued to stop personal contacts with our officials.

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