The Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, NIS, Muhammad Babandede, has explained why there is scarcity of the Nigerian passport, blaming it on contracts for the production of the booklets which were awarded by the previous government when the exchange rate was not as high as it currently is.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja on Saturday, he stated that while the price of the Nigerian passport has not changed, the cost of bringing in the component has changed owing to the increase in the dollar exchange rate. He pointed out that the Service has made proposals to the government.
Babandede, who pointed out that a hike in price is not the only way to address the scarcity, noted however, that it is not sustainable for the price of the Nigerian passport to remain the same despite of the high cost of production.
Speaking on the efforts made by the Service to increase government revenue, he stated that as at the end of last month, the NIS had generated more revenue than what was realized for the government via Immigrations in 2015. The CGI stated that while $29,747,900 (N25,872,320,787.83) was generated in 2015, $32,733,810 (N29,236,679,810.91) has been realized as at the end of October 2016.
He added that the Service can increase the revenue by 25 percent in 2017 if government goes ahead to consider some issues it raised in the budget.