The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has assured travellers of fair treatment under the new visa regime.
NIS spokesman, Sunday James, who disclosed this in a statement on Friday in Abuja, also assured that the agency will respect the fundamental rights of every traveler to the country.
James said that the service would continue to practice citizens’ diplomacy with the new visa regime.
“As a committed service, we will continue to practice citizens’ diplomacy both towards Nigerians and foreigners regardless of passport but on merit and integrity.
“The quality of a national passport is not only in good finishing and look, but what determines its acceptance to the global communities is more on the integrity of the citizens which rubs on the integrity of the passport they are holding.
“Acceptance evaluation of Nigerian passport as a travel document and citizens integrity determines how many countries will allow a Nigerian citizen entry into their country under which condition and for how long,’’ he said.
James said the NIS had uploaded 150,000 stolen and lost travel documents (SLTD) to the database of the International Police Global System (IPSG) as part of efforts to curtail visa crimes.
He said Nigeria is the first country in Africa and 54th in the world to automate its uploading system.
“To have uploaded such quantity is an indication that the NIS is not resting on its oars and the information 24/7 centre of the service is working around the clock accessing diffusions from the INTERPOL General Assembly.
“This is to analyse, interrogate and interpret for domestic consumption and international actions to be taken.
“The result of such analysis, interrogation and interpretation is the upload of the 150,000 Stolen and Lost Travel Documents which by implication puts Nigeria on ascension on global podium of integrity, secured economy and safe for investment.
“This is also an indication that the NIS system is working to detect, identify and classify the various passports that were invalidated, stolen, lost, fake and tampered with,’’ he said.
James said that the fight against identity theft was part of the reason for the change from the colonial passport, hand written, machine readable passport to e-passport, which has more than 25 security features.