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FG Withdraws Official Passports Of Ex-ministers, Govs, Lawmakers

Nigerian-passportsBy Patrick Aigbokhan

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has revoked the passports of all former governors and ministers issued to them during their tenure in office as government officials.
Mr. Martin Abeshi, Comptroller-General of the Immigration Service, said in a statement on Monday that NIS has also instructed former senators, ex-House of Representatives members, ex-special advisers, retired heads of government agencies, former members of state Houses of Assembly and retired public servants to submit their passports immediately.
In a statement by the NIS, the CG said, “These categories of persons are hereby informed that these passports which were previously held by them have been revoked and should return them to the Nigeria Immigration Service Headquarters, Sauka, Abuja with immediate effect.
“Failure to comply with this directive will amount to an offence under the Immigration Act 2015. Such unauthorised possession will be impounded at our control posts on arrival or departure.”
The Federal Government on August 24 directed the Immigration Service to retrieve all valid diplomatic and official passports from all persons not entitled to hold such documents.
The development was said to be part of the reforms being carried out by the new immigration boss.
Only governors, the President, the Vice-President and a few other select officials ideally are said should be ordinarily entitled to diplomatic passports, lamenting that the passport has been bastardised.
“Ideally, only the President, his deputy, governors, deputy governors, diplomatic officials, ambassadors and a few Federal lawmakers should be entitled to diplomatic passports.
“However, many influential Nigerians including top pastors who were close to former president Goodluck Jonathan had diplomatic passports. This should not be so. In fact, state lawmakers and commissioners shouldn’t be entitled to diplomatic passports but the whole thing was abused,” he said.

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