By Christopher Oji
A new passport application and processing regime will commence by June 1, according to the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).
The NIS said that requests for fresh and/or reissuance of International Passport shall not be entertained with effect from May18 till May 31 in all centres, except for locations in the Missions abroad.
Notifications for collection of produced passports are already going out to applicants who indicated functional phone numbers in their applications.
Our source said NIS Controller General Mohammed Babandade has ordered that all passport issuing centres are to clear the existing backlog of applications on or before May 31.
Critical features of the reform shall include the following: ‘Applicants shall visit immigration.gov.ng to apply, pay and upload all the required documents for Passports; Book interview/appointment after a successful online application; that no applicant who have not booked online appointment shall be attended to and that no cash payment to anyone shall be entertained in any Issuing Centre;
‘Also, that Passport application processing and issuance shall take a period of six weeks after a successful enrollment; requests for reissue can be submitted six months before expiration.’
According to our source: ‘Our Centres are working hard to resolve all backlog applications.We therefore, appeal to applicants who have been waiting for more understanding and assure that they’ll get their Passports soon.’