Immigration sensitizes expatriates on new visa policy
The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has asked expatriates living in the country to comply with the new visa policy of the country for their own good.
The Comptroller-General of the NIS, Mr. David Shikfu Parradang, who was represented by the Zonal Coordinator in charge of Zone A, Mr. Nuhu Ibrahim, an Assistant Comptroller General of Immigration, said the agency had cancelled the use of re-entry visa into Nigeria, adding that only a valid Combined Expatriate Residence Permit and Aliens Card (CERPAC), in addition to other valid travel documents, would be accepted for the purpose of re-entry into Nigeria.
Parradang made the remarks while declaring open a stakeholders’ forum organized by the Zone A Command of the agency in Lagos at the weekend.
He said re-entry visa ceased to be a requirement for re-admitting foreigners with legal residence in Nigeria in April 2015.
He said: “In the quest to align the Nigeria’s Visa regime to be in tandem with international best practices in migration management, the Nigeria Immigration Service, in December, 2014, obtained the approval of the Federal Government to carry out more operational reforms, including the abolition of re-entry visa which was hitherto a prerequisite for re-admitting any foreigner who is legally resident in Nigeria.
“The implementation guidelines clearly stated that with effect from April 6, 2015, re-entry visa would cease to be a requirement for purpose of re-admitting foreigners with legal residence in Nigeria.
“The possession of a valid CERPAC, in addition to other valid travel documents, now suffices for purpose of re-entry into Nigeria.”
Parradang said the NIS was working hard to ensure the card was produced within two months of issuance of interest forms to expatriates, adding that more issuing centers were being created.
The Deputy Comptroller of the NIS and the Special Assistant to the Comptroller-General on Operations, S.E. Leggjack, in his presentation, said CERPAC was among the new visa policies of the agency.
He said that the new policy is actually aimed at encouraging rapid industrialization, boosting tourism and attracting skilled migrant workers, innovators and entrepreneurs, which will increase technology transfers and improve employment opportunities for youths in the country, adding that, the operational reforms and attendant charges are also designed to favour and encourage passionate and lawful investors and business concerns as our aim is to ensure a more transparent and friendly service delivery public agency.
The guest lecturer, Dr. Willie Eselebor, said nations were revising security strategies to suit their development needs, adding that the NIS should improve on its role of safeguarding the nation’s treasured heritage and borders.