It’s highly embarrassing that you keep hearing about harrowing stories or experiences of Nigerians wishing to obtain a fresh passport or those who intend to reissue or as it is popularly known renew their Nigeria passport. Here we painstakingly researched 4 ways to beat the scarcity of Nigeria passports.
4 WAYS TO BEAT THE SCARCITY OF NIGERIA PASSPORTS
This topic is highly imperative in that more and more people are missing important engagement abroad due to the scarcity of passports in Nigeria. Likewise, many Nigerians living overseas who for one reason or the other travelled home with expired or about to expire passports could not return due to their inability to reissue their Nigeria passports.
As at the time of writing this piece a close relative of mine applied for a fresh passport in Abeokuta, Ogun State, in August 2021, that’s more than 3 months ago the passport is yet to be produced. When we enquired from the passport office, the reason given was that the passport office lacks booklets.
The above mentioned sad introduction made me search for possible ways to beat the scarcity of Nigerian passports.
1. Never wait until you need a passport urgently before placing in a passport application:
One sad reality every Nigerian should accept is that things are getting out of hand in the country, realistically, large numbers of people are leaving the country in an unprecedented manner. Daily news is becoming horrible to hear, banditry, arm robbery, kidnapping, rapping and assassination are the common news and occurrences. The violent crime that we used to hear from far distances are everywhere nowadays and citizens are becoming apprehensive and the easiest way out to them is to obtain a passport and get out of an unsafe and unsettled country.
Because large numbers of the population are seeking to obtain a passport in an unprecedented manner, the best thing you can do is to make a very early application for a passport, at least six months before your potential exit from the country.
Please note that when demand is higher than supply, there will be scarcity or rationing and shady deals will set in, therefore early preparation is imperative to beat the scarcity of Nigeria passports.
2. Get your Nigeria Identity card ready:
Nowadays, the National Identity Card is a prerequisite for most transactions in the country. It is quite strange that many people are yet to acquire their national identity cards. It is important to reiterate that in most of the important passport issuing centres in Nigeria, if you don’t have a national identity card you can not apply for a Nigeria passport, therefore if you want to beat the scarcity of Nigeria passports you must have a national identity card ready prior to application.
Please note that it is not enough to possess NIN but the information it contains must be identical to the information in your application for a passport. Importantly if you’re reissuing your passport be sure you go along with your national identity card. Importantly carefully check if your date of birth and all the names in the passport correspond with the NIN you’re carrying. A slight change will not only make your application be rejected, but any attempt to correct the difference is always expensive and exploitative.
3. Get ready to leave your comfort zone
Please note that the Nigeria Electronic passport is the same everywhere. Where you process the document is irrelevant, whether you obtain it in Damaturu, Akure, or New York City, the document is acceptable and valid until the expiration date. Never relies on one particular passport office.
Erroneously, some applicants believed that a passport obtained at the ikoyi passport office is the only document acceptable by all Western embassies in the country. That’s a narrow-minded exposition. Please grow up and leave your comfort zone. The Nigeria Immigration Service is a Federal establishment. There are about 39 passport issuing centres across the country and you’re free to apply to any of them. Instead of stagnating or boxing yourself in, in one area where applications may be many and they will keep telling you to come today come tomorrow, feel free to check an area where there are not many crowds. Especially where booklets are currently available.
4. Engage someone who can facilitate the issuance:
Factually, if anyone tells you to apply for a passport all alone without the assistance of someone who understands the internal working of the organization, the person is deceiving you. Realistically, in today’s Nigeria applying for and processing a Nigeria e-passport without someone assisting in the processing and getting it out is usually frustrating and a waste of time.
Currently, the only viable option in getting a Nigerian passport if you intend to beat the scarcity is to engage the service of a person who can facilitate the issuance because the demand is far higher than the number of booklets available.
Recently I posted two articles namely: facts36.com/how-long-does-it-take-to-get-a-nigeria-passport-in-the-us & facts36.com/how-long-does-it-take-to-get-a-nigeria-passport-in-the-uk
The reply we got from multiple sources shows the obvious the corruption ways of achieving results which we thought is limited to Nigeria is far worst in the above mentioned two Western countries. Sadly, no straightforward answers on how long does it take to get a Nigerian passport in the UK and the US.
THE BOTTOM LINE ON 4 WAYS TO BEAT THE SCARCITY OF NIGERIA PASSPORTS
Currently, the authorities of the Nigeria Immigration Service is shifting blame for their inadequacies or inability of meeting the 6 weeks target for the issuance of a fresh passport or 3 weeks for the reissue of expires passports on challenges experienced by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) in getting National identity Number. That’s just a flimsy excuse. The real problem is their inability to produce booklets. For example, The Immigration Service Passport Office in Abeokuta is not having NIN issues still yet, they failed to process and produce passport applications submitted more than 3 months ago.
Something is seriously wrong with the Nigerian system, we are very good at the blame game, but nobody wants to take a responsibility.
That’s all for now on 4 ways to beat the scarcity of Nigeria passports.