The Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, says the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has cleared a passport backlog of almost 60,000 within four working days.

 

Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo disclosed this on Tuesday in Abuja when he received the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation Betta Edu on a courtesy call.

“When we came on board, the passport crisis was an embarrassment. And, we said: it cannot continue!” a statement from the minister’s spokesman Alao Babatunde quoted his principal as saying.

“As of this morning, I can tell you that about 60,000 passport backlogs have been cleared, especially 59,906. On Wednesday, September 6, 2023, when I gave the 2-week ultimatum, we had over 200,000 backlogs. We have recorded progress, and I maintain my word that those backlogs must be cleared.”

On her part, Edu said the visit was due to the need to extend its hand of partnership with the ministry as it seeks to tackle human trafficking and other related challenges including poor veterans’ welfare, underemployment, and poverty among citizens.

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According to her, the ministry was in the best position to solve issues of human trafficking as it plays a supervisory role in the NIS.

The interior minister is therefore assuring her of his cooperation.

“His Excellency President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has directed us to see the place of partnership as agents of his #RenewedHope Agenda, and we are here to deliver on this mandate,” he added.

“We assure you of our support. Your initiative is progressive and commendable, especially at this crucial time in the history of our country. There is a lot of work to be done, and we cannot work in silos as the President has directed.”