Japa: We issued over 2m passports to Nigerians in 2023 – Immigration - VANGUARD
FEBRUARY 06, 2024
The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has said that it issued more than 2 million passports to Nigerians in 2023.
Comptroller-General Immigration, Caroline Wura-Ola Adepoju, disclosed this on Tuesday during a Diaspora virtual lecture series.
The lecture was tagged ‘New Passport Policy/Processes for Nigerians in the Diaspora Confirmation’ organised by the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM).
According to Adepoju, the mass relocation of Nigerians to developed countries also known as ‘Japa’ has spurred an unprecedented rise in the number of passport applications.
The CGI said 2021 recorded the issuance of 1.3 million passports while 1.5 million passports were issued in the following year 2022 representing about a 50 per cent surge in the applications.
In 2023, there was over 100 per cent increase in applications with 2,141,300 passports issued last year.
She also lauded the automation of the passport process to reduce human interface with the immigration officers, as a great initiative for passport applicants.
The CGI stated that since the automation went live last month, over 100,000 applications were received online, and over 80 per cent of them were processed without challenges.
She added that the reform of the passport process would reduce pressure on the strained facilities of NIS nationwide.
The Interior Minister, Hon Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, had promised that Nigerians in the Diaspora would no longer go experience the pains of endless wait to obtain their passports.
Chairman/CEO of NIDCOM, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, commended the Minister and the CGI for the milestone achievements recorded within a short period, culminating in easing the pains of Nigerians.
Meanwhile, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Yemi Cardoso, lamented that the school and medical tourism have increased the increase in the exchange rate between the naira and dollar.
Cardoso stated this during the sectoral debate put together by the House of Representatives on Tuesday in Abuja.
According to him, the high cost of living remains a concern adding that the CBN is working to bring lasting solutions and to bring down the inflation to 21.4 percent through improved agricultural productivity.