PMB Launches 10-year Validity Passport
President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday launched a new enhanced security Nigerian passport with 10 years validity. Speaking to State House correspondents after the federal executive council meeting presided over by President Buhari,the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) ,Mohammad Babandede said the new passport has enhanced features which will make it easier for security management. He said the new passport will change the new parttern and bring discipline in the system, stressing that the new and the old passports work concurrently.
According to him,the new passport with 32 pages, will cost N25, 000 and $130 abroad, the 64 page for five years will cost N35, 000 and $150 abroad while the 64 page with 10 years validity will cost N70, 000 in Nigeria and $230 abroad. He said “the new passport reform programme is weather friendly, International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) compliant, it has polycarbonate technology that eliminates damage, enhanced security features and save Nigerians in the Diaspora time of frequent visit to Nigerian Embassy among others. On his part, minister of interior ,Abdulrahman Dambazau said Nigerians in diaspora were hammering on the 10 year passport which the government has obliged. He said the e -passport data base is the most reliable source of data for criminal investigation.
According to him,one of the challenges they had was that the passport was being produced outside the country,noting that for security reasons it is important the government domesticates passport production. He said the government is in the process of domestication as the Nigeria Minting Company will soon take over the production of the passports. During his briefing,minister of information, Lai Mohammed said the government will take its final decision on the new minimum wage after it has been discussed by the National Economic Council. The NEC is chaired by the Vice President with state governors as members . Recall that the governors had said they cannot afford the N30,000 minimum wage demanded by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC).