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‘We’ll make sure green passport regains it’s pride’, FG tells EU

By Tina Abeku, Abuja
24 September 2023   |   6:44 am
The federal government has said that it has embarked on key reforms towards ensuring that Nigeria's international passport regains it's pride through key reforms through reduce identity theft and transparency in passport processing.

Minister of Interior, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo

The federal government has said that it has embarked on key reforms towards ensuring that Nigeria’s international passport regains it’s pride through key reforms through reduce identity theft and transparency in passport processing.

Minister of Interior, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, made this known while hosting the European Union (EU) Ambassador to Nigeria, Samuela Isopi, weekend in Abuja.

He said, “We have commenced the process to unbottle the bottlenecks in our international passport application and collection process. Today, we have made huge progress. We are also working on ways to reduce identity theft. We want to make sure the green passport regains its pride and integrity.”

““If we are able to solve crime and migration problems in Nigeria, Africa will be better for it.

“Due to the boundaries Africa shares with the EU, our problems are more of an EU problem than any other part of the world. And, because we are committed to solving this, we will explore all avenues.”

Urging the EU to support the federal government’s drive for reforms in the area of deploying technology to buffer and enhance border management architecture within the country, he said “The European Union is important to the socio-economic development of Nigeria. Our relationship with the EU is historical in terms of but not limited to bilateral support.”

The minister explained that there are also plans to decongest the nation’s correctional facilities across the country because over seventy per cent of the 79,000 inmates in the nation’s custodial centers are awaiting trial.

“We have over 4000 inmates in the facilities for their inability to pay various fines. We believe we can reduce the number of inmates in our correctional facilities by about forty per cent if we explore non-custodial alternatives as provided for in the Correctional Service Act, ” Dr. Tunji-Ojo said in a communique signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Also Babatunde.

On her part, Isopi said the EU will continue to support Nigeria as well as provide technical support in managing the illegal aspect of migration as well as curbing human trafficking and people smuggling.