Foreigners visiting Nigeria, who are not nationals of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), will henceforth register at the country’s entry ports and pay $200 if they are staying up to 56 days in addition to whatever category of visa the visitor has.
In addition, non-ECOWAS visitors spending up to 180 days in Nigeria are expected to pay $1,000, as penalty for overstay while those who overstay beyond 180 days will pay a penalty of $2,000.
The newly appointed Comptroller General of Immigration Service Martins Kure Abeshi, announced these fines as part of his policy thrust among a series of other operational reforms during his inaugural meeting with heads of Commands and formations at the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) headquarters in Abuja on Wednesday.
Mr Chukwuemeka Pius Obua, NIS spokesman, in a statement listed some other reforms as deepening of Internal Control/Monitoring, Border Security and Patrol as well as a robust engagement with critical stakeholders of the NIS with the purpose of evolving a “Citizen Inclusive Immigration Service.”
According to Obua, “The CGI also informed them that the NIS in partnership with Messrs CONTEC (NIS’s technical partner on the CERPAC Green card project) would soon introduce the e-pass project under the Trusted Travellers Scheme (TTS).
“When the project takes off, all non-ECOWAS visitors to Nigeria who intend to stay in excess of 56 days would be required to register and pay a fee equivalent to $200 while those who overstay their visitors’ passes in excess of between 90-180 days would pay a penalty of an equivalent of $1,000. Those who overstay in excess of 180 days would be required to pay a penalty equivalent to $2,000.”
The new NIS boss believes a reform “in border security would require a revitalization and reinvigoration of the moribund Air Border Patrol Unit to its former enviable status as the premier Aerial Border Patrol Unit in Nigeria.
“He affirmed that cases of sharp practices such as extortion, touting and general staff indiscipline would be frontally checked just as enormous attention would be paid to the welfare of officers and men. He promised to continue with the staff Multipurpose Co-operative Scheme of the Service which would dovetail into the incorporation of NIS Micro Finance Bank.
“He further assured that the NIS under his leadership would intensify efforts at addressing the disturbing rate of human trafficking in the country. He thereafter directed all heads of formations to put machinery on ground in their various formations to stop the ignoble practice.
“The maiden briefing with the CGI was attended by five Deputy Comptrollers General, 29 Assistant Comptrollers General and 56 Comptrollers.”