Avoid touts, pay online for passport application –FG – New Telegraph Newspaper

T he Federal Government said it has digitalised payments for the Nigerian Passports, advising citizens to avoid patronizing touts and unscrupulous officials when applying for the documents.
ÍMinister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola yesterday stated this yesterday in Ibadan, the Oyo State Capital, during the Rollout of the Enhanced e- Passport with Polycarbonate Data Page and other security features.
“Part of the reforms is the migrationof passportapplication and payments to digital platforms. But we regret to observe that applicants still patronise touts and unscrupulousofficialsinthehopetobeat the system and get expedited services. When they were disappointed, they come to report to us.
Of course, we have zero tolerance for corruption and subversion of due process. We therefore take seriously any such report and invoke the necessary disciplinary measures.
“But I will implore applicants to stop patronising touts and our officials directly. Followtheprocessweputinplace.
Apply for passports and pay  online. The only engagement withourstaff istheenrolment of your biometrics. Patronising touts and passport office officials doesn’t always end well, but rather serves to defeat our purposeof eliminating corruption and infusing integrity to the passport administration process,” the minister stated. Speaking on the new application process, the minister noted that a new timeline has been set for fresh passport application and reissue.
“Our template stipulates maximum six weeks for obtaining new passports and maximum three weeks for renewal.
We work within this schedule to enable us investigate any claims made by applicants and verify them, for the final document we issue them to have integrity. If there are challenges, wait, eventually you will get your passport before your due date of travel, if you apply early enough.
You will still have long enough time to apply for visa and other travel documents. “Nowhere in the world is passport administration done on wait-and-get basis except in extreme emergencies. The only wait-and-get passport is passport photograph,” the minister stated.
On the new enhanced passport being rolled out in Ibadan, the Oyo State Capital, the minister noted that the passport is an improved document with high security features.
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