The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has disclosed that the scarcity of international passport booklets in the country is as a result of the exchange regulation policy and lack of access to foreign currency.
Idris Jere, comptroller-general of the NIS who spoke at a public hearing organized by an ad-hoc committee of the house of representatives, revealed that the booklets are imported.
“The shortage is caused by the foreign exchange regulation policy of the government and CBN’s refusal to grant access to forex for importation of the booklets.
“We generate forex from the sale of passports but we do not have access to buy the same booklet and that is a challenge for NIS.
“The factors responsible for the scarcity of passports include the inability to set up passport producing factory in Nigeria as its production is done abroad.
“The major seven components used for producing passports are sold in the international market and the assemblage and production are done in Malaysia.”