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NIS URGES NIGERIANS TO EMBRACE  NEW PASSPORT SYSTEM

NIS URGES NIGERIANS TO EMBRACE NEW PASSPORT SYSTEM

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has appealed to Nigerians to embrace the new passport system introduced by the agency last August.

The comptroller of the service in Enugu State, Mr. Bashir Ismail made the appeal in Enugu last week while speaking with Newsmen.

Mr. Ismail said that the new passport had security features to safeguard travelers. According to him, the new passport that came into force in August this year contains 64 pages. “This facility is designed for frequent travelers that easily exhaust their 32 page passport, he said.

The comptroller said it was introduced after a thorough examination of the challenges that Nigerians faced with the old system.

“The Nigeria Immigration Service after 10 years of issuing the last passport had to review the administration of passports in order to serve Nigerian better.

Ismail said that the introduction of the new passport also became necessary to reduce the extent to which people frequent the immigration office to renew their passport.

“The immigration decided to consider ages zero to 18 known to be dependants and our senior citizens from 61years and above to pay 18,500 for the passport.  “The ages 19 to 60, who are considered as working class will pay N22, 500 for a passport more than the first group. Part of the reform is to make the new passport regime gender friendly.

“There are women who need to change their names from maiden to married names and vice vesa. Such people are given the privilege to pay less just like the minors and senior citizens; he said.

Ismail said that the new passport had introduced a more secure way of maintaining data, passport delivery, address check and monitor facilities.

“That is why a little amount is added to the passport fees and this will enable us confirm the address of people travelling outside Nigeria.

“I will advice Nigerians to give correct address in order to get correct travel documents’ he said.

Ismail said that the Enugu command has issued 13,901 international passports to Nigerian citizens between January and August, this year.  “We have also opened an office that checks applicants that are minors and dependants to monitor child trafficking. This includes children that escort families to travel.  “We also cleared 1,189 minors to travel with their sponsors within the period” Ismail said.

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