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Corruption: Minister catches Immigration Officer extorting passport applicants

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Corruption: Minister catches Immigration Officer extorting passport applicants

By Matthew Atungwu

Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, on Wednesday caught and queried an officer of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) for extorting passport applicants at the Alausa Passport Office of the NIS in Lagos.

According to a statement by Sola Fasure, a media adviser to the minister, Aregbesola paid a surprise visit to the passport office and caught the officer (name not given) in the act.

Whilst listening to feedback from applicants who were waiting for their data capturing, an applicant complained about the application process, which in his opinion was cumbersome.

“After I completed my application and chose today for my data capturing appointment, I printed every necessary document. However, on my arrival here, I was asked to start filling a manual form again, which I had filled online and printed already”.

The minister thereafter asked the Passport Control Officer at the station, Mrs B. L. Bukar, to explain the breach of due process, noting that such a request was strange.

According to the statement, the officer who allegedly sold the form and made the request for the manual filling was identified and subsequently queried.

While frowning at the act, the minister told the officers on duty that they were servants of the people and this must be reflected in their attitude at work and the way they relate with passport applicants.

He warned them to avoid creating false gridlock that frustrates and infuriates the people.

Aregbesola therefore advised Nigerians to follow due process in their passport application and shun patronizing touts who will end up disrupting the standardized procedure.

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