TheNigerianVoice Online Radio Center

No Hiding Place For illegal Immigrant in Nigeria - Immigration Boss

By ORIH CHIBUIKE, The Nigerian Voice, Abuja
Listen to article

The Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), CGI. Martin Abeshi, says the Service had put in place new stringent measures to flush out illegal migrants from Nigeria.

Abeshi made the disclosure at a world press briefing on migration and border management issues in Nigeria on Friday in Abuja.

NIS boss decried the menace of illegal immigrants in the country and noted that the service had arrested and deported a lot of culprits across the country.

“I am sure you have been hearing of arrests and deportation of these illegal migrants by the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) from across the country.

“We are up to the task; our officers in the various parts of the country are performing very well, that is why today there has been a drastic drop in the number of foreigners who commit crime and violence in the country.

“We have also put in place additional measures to checkmate any foreigner that is here to disrupt the peace we are enjoying,’’ he said.

It recalls that about 500 migrants were recently arrested by the NIS in Niger, of whom 300 were declared illegal immigrants and awaiting deportation.

Abeshi also said that the NIS was doing a lot to ensure more efficiency in the production of international passports for Nigerians in line with international best practice.

NIS boss also carpeted the former Interior minister, Abba Moro, for saying that the immigration service lacked the capacity to produce international passport booklets and the Combined Expatriate Residence Permit and Aliens Card.

Abeshi dismissed Moro’s claims, saying the service had the capacity to produce the two security documents if adequately funded.

The two documents were being produced for the NIS by two private firms.

Moro had told a public hearing by the House Committee on Interior last Wednesday that the agreements the immigration service had with different private companies were not judiciously implemented.

But the CG in a reaction to Moro’s claims said the NIS had well trained personnel who could produce the international passport booklets and the CERPAC cards.

He said, “Moro is entitled to his opinion. If he says we don’t have capacity to produce international passport, what did he do about that in the period he stayed as minister of interior? I don’t believe we don’t have the capacity to produce passports, we have it, the calibre of staff by their training, we have more than enough if available funds are given to us.”

In an efforts to reposition the Service, Abeshi noted that NIS had concluded plans to host the Comptroller-General of Immigration Annual Conference and Stakeholders Interactive Forum.

He said the forum would afford participants opportunity to access the performance of the NIS compared to world best practice.

Abeshi said that recommendations reached at the end of the conference would be presented to the Federal Executive Council and could be gazetted as a policy document that would transform operations of the NIS.

Abeshi said personalities that would present papers at the conference include the British High Commissioner in Nigeria, European Union (EU) and local and foreign migration and border experts would deliver papers at the conference.

Others are Senator Monsurat Sunmonu, who would present a paper on “Migration Management through Legislation” and Olisa Agbakoba, SAN, whose paper would be on “Review of the Immigration Act, 2015.

Abeshi stated that the service planned to hold its annual conference and stakeholders interactive forum between April 6 and April 8 in Lafia, Nasarawa State, noting that the conference is timely in view of the migrant crisis and migration in global discourse.

He said as part of efforts to reposition the Service, the NIS had concluded plans to host the Comptroller-General of Immigration Annual Conference and Stakeholders Interactive Forum.

He said the forum would afford participants opportunity to access the performance of the NIS compared to world best practice.

Abeshi said that recommendations reached at the end of the conference would be presented to the Federal Executive Council and could be gazetted as a policy document that would transform operations of the NIS.