Nigerian borders must be well tightened against security threats, Abiodun tells NIS
Apparently disturbed by increasing level of insecurity and insurgency which have been staring Nigeria and Nigerians on the face, Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State has directed Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) to tighten Nigerian borders against further security threats to the country, saying there must be effective security and scrutiny at the border posts in order to discover and separate genuine migrants from criminals.
Speaking at a two-day Nigeria Immigration Service Officers’ Retreat held in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital, Governor Dapo Abiodun noted that current security realities all over the World have testified that no country is immune to insecurity if required security measures were not taken to forestall possible breakdown of law and order and security breach.
Governor Abiodun, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Tokunbo Talabi said: “Emerging facts in business and investment development have consistently shown that one of the major factors in the promotion of investment is the ease of movement of people.
“Little wonder that some other countries have decided to review and amend their visa policies for foreigners coming into their respective countries. A clear example is that of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
“This shows that apart from creating the ambience, there is also the need for people to take advantage of the created ambience and, at some times, the people with financial and/or technological wherewithal may not be within the same system. This is where the Immigration Service comes in.
“At this point, it becomes imperative that we properly scrutinise people coming into the country. We must be able to identify those with genuine interest who will add value to the system and not those who will come in and end up being security threats.
“Some have raised different opinions why Ogun State, nay our Administration, has continued to demonstrate special interest in immigration issues. Their opinion is based on the fact that immigration, just like other security issues, is listed on the Exclusive List of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
“Citizens hardly make distinction on which tier or level of Government that ensures their wellbeing and welfare. All they want and deserve is good governance.”
Earlier, Comptroller-General of Immigration Service, Muhammad Babandede, explained that series of security measures, including the border drill exercise, the introduction of integrated border management techniques and data capturing exercise of migrants resident in the states across, to achieve effective border policing, national security and economic advancement of the country.
Babandede, represented by Funke Adeuyi, Assistant Comptroller-General, lauded the State government for sustaining economic status of Ogun state as Nigeria’s industrial and investment hub and assured the State government on improved border policing and national security, but requested people at the border areas to expose migrants that were not duly registered and captured in their various localities for documentation.
“Permit me to use this opportunity, Your Excellency, in appealing to the good people of Ogun State for greater understanding and support, and cooperation with the Nigeria Immigration Service, Ogun State Command and other Security Agencies involved in the ongoing border drill exercise aimed at achieving effective border policing national security and economic advancement of our dear country, Nigeria.
“They should also collaborate with us on the data capturing exercise of migrants resident in the state, who are desirous of staying more than 90 days in the country. This exercise continues and it is in the best interest of the nation,” the Comptroller-General said.
RAZAQ AYINLA, Abeokuta