The federal government has revealed its plan to digitize the passport application process by implementing a full biometric system for passport application and collection by February 2024.
The Times reported that this revelation was made by Interior Minister, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, in a statement at the recently concluded sixth Nigeria Diaspora Investment Summit, which was hosted by Nigerians in Diaspora.
The theme for the summit is “National Development and the Diaspora: New Aspirations, Opportunities, and Vistas.”
Speaking about the various difficulties involved in passport processing in the country, Tunji-Ojo mentioned that Nigerians do not need to stay in queue to get their passports processed.
He stated that before February 2024, a fully biometric immigration application process will be available in the majority of foreign countries, minimizing human contact and facilitating convenient passport collection.
“Nigerians deserve the best, both at home and abroad. They don’t have to go through a lot of hardship to obtain a Nigerian passport. As the first step in this assignment, a team from the Ministry will launch the E8 Mandate in the UK.
The Minister further underlined that any government officer acting unethically will no longer be accepted. Under his direction, he declared that the Ministry of Interior will dedicate itself to providing all Nigerians with efficient services.
“To reduce the threat of corruption in the system and increase the effectiveness of service delivery to Nigerians, report any unethical behaviour by officers in the Ministry and its respective parastatals,” he continued.
Prior to this, Tunji-Ojo revealed that the Ministry is developing a way to encourage passports being delivered home by 2024.
He said the Ministry is collaborating with NIPOST, the Nigerian Postal Service, to guarantee smooth passport distribution throughout the nation.
“We have announced a timeline for when Nigerians will start to enjoy the “sweet experience,” and we have started automating our entire passport application process. It implies that Nigerians will receive their passports in no more than two weeks.
“Nigerians would be able to apply online by January of the following year, and by February of the same year, their passports will be delivered to their homes, workplaces, and other preferred locations thanks to cooperation and partnerships with other pertinent parties.”