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Nigeria to Launch Home Delivery of Passports in June

Nigerians will soon be able to receive their passports without visiting immigration offices, as the home delivery service is set to begin in June. The Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, announced this development on Friday during an inspection of the electronic gates at the new terminal of Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja.

Tunji-Ojo explained that the home delivery service will initially be available in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Kano, and Abuja to prevent system overload. For Nigerians living abroad, the service will first be launched in the United States and the United Kingdom, with preliminary testing to ensure its effectiveness.

The delay in implementing home delivery was due to the lack of dedicated data centers. The Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) had been relying on a private company’s data center, but a permanent solution was needed to maintain the integrity of national data.

“We have completed the entire solution, but upon assuming office, we found that the necessary data center was not in place. We were leveraging a private company’s data center, and while we appreciate their assistance, creating a permanent solution is better than relying on quick fixes. We could have launched in February, but we had to build our data center from scratch to ensure the integrity of our data and national security,” Tunji-Ojo stated.

He emphasized that it was unacceptable for NIS, the custodian of Nigeria’s biometric data, to rely on third-party data centers. The new data center has now been constructed, resolving the passport delivery issue. “This is about national security, and our data center is now comparable to any in the world. We have built the data center, sorted the passport delivery solution, and finalized the technology and tracking solution embedded in our application to avoid multiple lines of failure,” the minister added.

Tunji-Ojo also announced the completion of the final presentation for the electronic visa, which will reduce visa processing time from 72 hours to 48 hours. “The passport automation process is almost complete,” he noted.

This announcement comes nine months after the minister initially declared that home delivery of passports to Nigerians would commence by February 2024. In October, Tunji-Ojo stated that from February 2024, Nigerians would be able to have their passports delivered to their homes, offices, or any location of their choice.

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