Nigerians in Diaspora with Expired Passports Can Return Without Visa –NIS
Nigerian Passport

Nigerians in Diaspora with Expired Passports Can Return Without Visa –NIS

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) on Tuesday said that Nigerians in the diaspora with expired passports would no longer require visas to visit home. The Service, however, stated that they must show their expired Nigeria passport to ensure they were truly from Nigeria.

Mr Tony Akuneme, the NIS Public Relations Officer, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja. Akuneme was reacting to inquiries about the new visa policy of the Federal Government which said that Nigerians with dual citizenship don’t need visa to visit home.

“The status of the new policy is that Nigerians with dual citizenship are free to come to Nigeria but with their Nigeria passport even if it’s expired. You have to show that you are a Nigerian that is why we say they can come with their expired passport. Dual citizenship means carrying two passports.

“Unlike before that when your passport is expired you will not be allowed to come to the country, now we can allow them to travel in with their expired Nigeria passport”, he said.

Akuneme further explained that although the essence was to allow them to return home, they will be required to renew their passport before returning to their destinations. “The whole essence is that when they arrive, they must renew their Nigeria passport before going back,” the NIS spokesman added.

FG debunks claim of international passport booklets shortages

Meanwhile, Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, on Monday in Abuja debunked claims that Nigeria’s international passport booklets are in short supply. Aregbesola said this at the President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration Scorecard 2015-2023 4th edition Series organised by the Ministry of Information and Culture.

The news agency reports that the scorecard series was launched by the ministry to showcase the achievements of the present Administration. The minister gave the assurance that enough booklets are available for those who had applied for passports and had been captured or were yet to be captured.

He said the government stopped the 24-hour passport services because of the criminalities and sharp practices involved in it.

“Some criminalities had occurred before we came and that has affected the Nigerian psyche on passports. Passports is the most secure identity document of any nation. It is the document that the president of the country attests to its first page recommending the citizens for good consideration from whoever comes across them.

“So it is not just a document to play with. It is the symbol of the sovereignty of a nation,’’ he said. Aregbesola said that there are differences in the way passports are issued by countries across the globe.

“In America, it takes 15 weeks to process, in Britain it takes 13 weeks and Japan is a country that has the shortest period for passport processes in the world, one week,’’ he said. READ: Japan, Singapore, S.Korea Top World’s Most Powerful Passports Index

The minister said the minimum period for processing a passport in Nigeria is six weeks in order to allow the appropriate authority to carry out diligent security checks. Aregbesola said the real challenge with the passport application process is the bottleneck in the processing system.

“I will not deny the fact that we do not have enough processing centres and we’re working on that. “Lagos and Abuja are so problematic because we have limited processing centres. Lagos has three processing centres whereas the state ought to have a minimum of 20 processing centres.

“We are working on a partnership with the private sector to provide only front office services where Nigerians can readily and easily do capturing for their passports while the main issuance will be for the Immigration.”

The minister reassured Nigerians within and outside the country of efficient service delivery in the issuance of international passports. # Nigerian in Diaspora with Expired Passport Can Return Without Visa –NIS

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