No fewer than 80 officers and men of the Nigerian Immigration Service have gone on trial for indulging in the collection of illegal fees for the issuance of new passports and renewal of old ones.
The Service Public Relations Officer, Comptroller of Immigration, Mr Tony Akuneme, who disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Sunday in Abuja, also indicated that eight other officers have been dismissed from service for the same offence in the last one year.
He said the disciplinary measures under the passport reform, were part of the three-point agenda of the present Comptroller General, NIS, Isah Jere, when he came on board.
Akuneme also said that the CG’s three-point agenda includes reforming passport issuance, tightening border security and improving the welfare of NIS officers.
According to him, Jere has done this to the best of his ability in the last one year plus, and that is what has led to most applicants booking online for passports.
“We have tried as much as possible to eliminate third parties so that if you really want, you can process the application of your passport from the comfort of your room on your laptop, android phones and you can pay online.
“You don’t really need anybody whether immigration officers or agents which we usually call touts. They have upgraded and become agents. They are still third parties.