The federal government has increased the duration of international passport from five to 10 years.

This was disclosed yesterday by the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Mohammed Babandede during the inauguration of the Guaranty Trust Bank POS Passport Fee Terminal at the Ikoyi Passport Office, Lagos.

Babandede explained that the 10 years duration would be for adults, while that of minors would remain five years.
He said the increase in the duration of passport has been endorsed by the National Assembly and also approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC).
According to him, the 10 years’ extension would take effect from next year, adding that the current backlog of requests for passports waiting for issuance would still be five years.

The Comptroller General also said to end the enduring scarcity of passport, which has lasted over two years, the document would now be printed in Nigeria with indication that it would no more be given out as concession.
Nigerian passport for years, has been printed overseas and given out to concessionaires.

It is also learnt that immediately the new passport duration takes effect from next year, renewal of passport would automatically be 10 years.
A senior official of NIS said it has become the trend all over the world, adding that it is a service the government must offer to its citizens.
The official said this would reduce the pressure on passport holders who throng passport offices all over the country to renew their passports.

According to him, it would also ease the pressure on Immigration officials who attend to thousands of applicants every working day.

He also noted that the increase in the duration of passport would in no way reduce the revenue generated by Immigration to the federal government.

Source: Thisday

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