December 8, 2023

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“Our Immigration On-Line Platform Will Serve You Better”

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The federal government’s decision to domesticate one of Nigeria’s sensitive documents, the international passport, is said to have begun to yield positive results as it continues to receive knocks and commendations from stakeholders in the country.
Not long ago, an indigenous company, Iris Smart Technology was reported to have endorsed the production bond with the Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company for the delivery of the new e-passport. By implication, this means the new e-passport production domestication agreement will be produced and delivered by an indigenous Company, here in Nigeria as against the former practice of printing the e-passport document overseas, a process some stakeholders described as unsafe and ominous.
This was stated in a release made available to TNN. According to the release, the Rivers State Comptroller of Immigration Mr R. A. Adegoke, through the Public Relations Officer in Abuja, Mr. Sunday James, recently encouraged applicants to take advantage of the immigration online platform to process their application to stem cases of extortion, crowd control and panic acquisition allegedly created by jobbers and opportunists alike.
The release also holds that, in government’s attempt at ensuring the e-passport domestication project is efficiently implemented nationwide within record time, that appropriate equipment and technology are being deployed.
It further stated that, “As at press time, Lagos, Abuja and Kano states are confirmed to have their facilities installed and functional, while that of Rivers State is at completion stage. As the Immigration Commands at different States grapple with the tasks of clearing old requests as well as satisfy new applicants demands simultaneously, the pressure seem more complex, with touts and greedy insiders taking undue advantage of unsuspecting applicants.
“Currently, the situation in the south-south and south-east commands is witnessing panic acquisition occasioned by continuous high demand. According to investigations, the Port Harcourt passport office, for certain reasons, bears the largest traffic of applicants amongst the south-south and south-east states. This has continuously kept the Comptroller and Passport Control Officer, Assistant Comptroller Mr. A.J Umoh on the hot seat.”
It further added that, “the Port Harcourt Passport Office has continued to perform its duties with dexterity despite challenges of paucity of booklets. Reports reaching us confirmed that the passport control officer (PCO) has intensified effort to ensure cases of exploitation, extortion and touting is reduced to the barest minimum.
“He has also engaged in various reforms and measures geared towards reducing the backlog of e-passport applications he met on ground since April 2019, and at the same time attend to fresh applications. Aside strategic renovations and reclamation of extended vicinity space to give the passport office a facelift, they have also re-introduced a customer, enquiries table/SERVICOM Help Desk and other measures aimed at enhancing work-flow in a conducive environment.
“On a general note the duo of the state comptroller of immigration and his PCO need to be commended for the dynamic way they have managed the challenges associated with the processing of passport especially on the backdrop of severe scarcity of booklets,” it added.

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