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Refugee management: Humanitarian Visa

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The European Union parliament has proposed to introduce Humanitarian Visas for refugees in the region. The main objective is to improve the well being of irregular migrants.

They approved the proposal in Strasbourg in order to reduce the death toll and improve the management of refugees. The initiative was approved by four hundred and twenty nine members of the parliament against one hundred and ninety four members and forty one abstentions. In November 2018, a similar proposal failed due to technical error during voting and also because they couldn’t get absolute majority of votes cast.

The parliament mandated the European Commission to present a legislative proposal establishing European Humanitarian Visa latest by 31st March 2019. The main purpose is to allow the member state issuing the visa access to submit an application for international protection of refugees. Members of European parliament lamented about their numerous requests for safe and legal migration of asylum-seekers into Europe yet the European Union lacks the legal framework for the protection of those that fall within that category.

The Humanitarian Visas would reduce to the barest minimum the death toll in the Mediterranean and other irregular migration routes. The visa will also combat human trafficking and smuggling. It will enhance the management of asylum claims. Member states have the sole responsibility of issuing humanitarian visas.

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Nigeria Immigration Service: Ranking System 1 (Non-Commissioned Personnel)

Nigeria Immigration Service is a government agency, a para-military outfit charged with the responsibility of migration management in Nigeria. NIS was extracted from the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) in 1958, but by 1963, Immigration Department (as it was then called) was formally established by an Act of Parliament CAP 171, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria. Then, the head of the department was known as the Director of Immigration. On October 1st  1992, the designation of Director of Immigration was changed to “Comptroller General of Immigration Service” (CGIS), thereby granting the service a para-military status. The service has come a long way in its march towards reformation and restructuring to be better positioned for the implementation of modern migration management. NIS core responsibilities includes the following:

I. Control of entry, exit of all persons entering and leaving Nigeria and monitoring of all Non-Nigerians in Nigeria.

II. Manning all Nigeria’s border posts (Land, Sea and Air)

III. Border patrol and surveillance.

IV. Implementation of Nigeria’s extant visa regime

V. Issuance and control of all travel documents

VI. Execution of deportation and repatriations orders

VII. Implementation of various treaties (bilateral, multilateral) entered into by Nigeria with other countries.

Nigeria Immigration Service is a regimented organization that has two (2) broad categories of officers:

A. Commissioned and

B. Non-Commissioned Officers.

Both categories are grouped into cadres comprising different ranks. Currently there are four (4) cadres of ranking in the organizational structure. The cadres in ascending order are as follows:

  1. Immigration Assistant Cadre
  2. Inspectorate Cadre
  3. Superintendent Cadre; and
  4. Comptroller Cadre.

1. IMMIGRATION ASSISTANT CADRE (NON-COMMISSIONED)

School Certificate holders belong here. The I.A Cadre comprises of five (5) ranks of non-commissioned officers, which includes:

I. Immigration Assistant III (IA3):

IA3 is the least rank in the service.  It is on CONPASS 03, i.e Consolidated Para-military Salary Scale Three (or GL. 03). Their badge of rank is ONE STRIPE.

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Immigration Assistant 3

      II. Immigration Assistant II (IA2):

Refers to CONPASS 04, identified with TWO STRIPES.

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Immigration Assistant 2

      III. Immigration Assistant I (IA1):

Refers to CONPASS 05, identified with THREE STRIPES.

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Immigration Assistant 1

      IV. Senior Immigration Assistant (SIA):

Refers to Immigration personnel on CONPASS 06, identified with ONE STRIPE THAT HAS A SHIELD WITH A WAVY PALL AT THE MIDDLE OF THE STRIPE (The shield symbolizes the meeting of the Niger and Benue Rivers at Lokoja, just like the one on Nigeria Coat of Arm).

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Senior Immigration Assistant

V. Chief Immigration Assistant (CIA):

On CONPASS 07, identified with THREE STRIPES, TWO OF WHICH HAS A SHIELD WITH A WAVY PALL

Chief Immigration AssistantSRC="http://www.migratetonigeria.com/nigeria-immigration-service-ranking-system.jpg"alt="nigeriaimmigrationserviceranking">

2. INSPECTORATE CADRE (NON-COMMISSIONED):

This cadre comprises of eight (8) ranks of Non-Commissioned Immigration Personnel. It ranges from personnel’s on CONPASS 06 through CONPASS 13. CONPASS 08  and above in this category are non-commissioned officers due to HND and B.sc disparity in the Nigeria Public and Civil Service. Although there are calls for the removal of the disparity, Nigeria Immigration Service is yet to scrap the HND/B.sc dichotomy. The ranks under this cadre are as follows:

I. Assistant Inspector of Immigration (A.I.I):

The AIIs are on CONPASS 06. Their rank insignia is TWO STRIPES, EACH HAS A SHIELD WITH WAVY PALL. They are personnels employed with Ordinary National Diploma or NCE (National Certificate in Education).

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Assistant Inspector

II. Inspector of Immigration (I.I):

Inspectors are on CONPASS 07. Assistant Inspectors upon promotion move to Inspector of Immigration. Their rank insignia is THREE STRIPES THAT HAS A SHIELD WITH A WAVY PALL AT THE MIDDLE OF EACH STRIPE.

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Inspector

        III. Senior Inspector of Immigration (S.I.I):

Senior Inspectors are Immigration personnel’s promoted from the rank of Inspectors, or those employed with Higher National Diploma into the service. They are on CONPASS 08, their rank insignia is a SHIELD WITH a WAVY PALL.

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Senior Inspector

IV. Principal Inspector of Immigration II (P.I.I. 2 ):

Senior Inspectors upon promotion, moves to principal inspector 2 on CONPASS 09. Their rank insignia has ONE STRIPE ADDED TO THE SHIELD WITH A WAVY PALL.

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Principal Inspector 2

         V. Principal Inspector of Immigration I (P.I.I 1):

Upon promotion PII2 moves to PII 1 on CONPASS 10. Their rank insignia has the SHIELD AT THE MIDDLE OF TWO STRIPES.

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Principal Inspector 1

         VI. Assistant Chief Inspector of Immigration (ACII):

Consequent upon promotion, PII 1 moves to ACII on CONPASS 11. Their rank insignia has TWO SHIELDS WITH A STRIPE IN-BETWEEN.

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Assistant Chief Inspector

         VII. Deputy Chief Inspector of Immigration (DCII):

ACIIs who are being promoted moves to DCII on CONPASS 12. Their rank insignia has TWO SHIELDS WITH A WAVY PALL.

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Deputy Chief Inspector

         VIII. Chief Inspector of Immigration Technical (C.I.I.T):

This is the limit where personnel’s on Inspectorate cadre can attain. They can’t move beyond this rank unless they are CONVERTED to superintendent cadre. DCIIs upon promotion moves to CIIT where they are meant to remain and wait for retirement unless they are converted with their Bachelors degree (B.sc, BA, B.ED, B.Tech, etc). That’s for those who might have obtained it through further studies. Their HNDs can NOT take them beyond Chief Inspector. The rank insignia has TWO SHIELDS WITH TWO STRIPES IN-BETWEEN THE SHIELDS. Chief Inspectors of Immigration are on Grade Level / CONPASS 13 and they wear brown Gorget Patches on their collar, just like their fellow CONPASS 13 counterparts in Comptroller cadre. The Gorget patches are similar to ‘Red Neck’ in the military (like we normally call it in Nigeria).

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Chief Inspector (technical)
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Ecowas Nationals and Right of Residence

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avoid irregular migration

Most atimes when ECOWAS nationals migrate to any of the member states for business, Residence or whatever reason. It is very important that they know what it entails to enforce their ‘Right of Residence’ as enshrined in ECOWAS Protocol. To avoid being regarded and treated as irregular Immigrant, the migrant should be in possession of necessary travel documents. For instance, In Nigeria it is required of every ECOWAS national upon migrating to Nigeria to be in possession of his or her National Standard Passport (International Passport) or ECOWAS Travel Certificate (of their country). They should also endeavour to enter Nigeria through a recognised port of entry in order to get proper endorsement (seen on arrival, S.O.A) on their ‘international passport’ or ECOWAS Travel Certificate. They should locate the nearest Nigeria Immigration Service state Command when they get to their destination in Nigeria, to regularise their stay. Regularisation of stay in this context refers to the Ecowas citizen being issued with ‘Ecowas Residence Card’. Ecowas Residence Card has a validity of two (2) years, renewable for another two years. This Residence Card enable the Ecowas citizen to reside in Nigeria legally. Note that any Immigrant who is not a citizen of any of the Ecowas member states would be required to get Combined Expatriates Residence Permit & Aliens Card (C.E.R.P.A.C) from Nigeria Immigration Service.

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Requirements for Re-issue (no more renewal) of International Passport

Nigeria Standard Passport generally referred to as International Passport or ECOWAS Passport by some people, currently have five (5) years validity. Upon expiration, the bearer may wish to renew it for purposes of identification or for traveling abroad. Your International Passport is due for RE-ISSUE whenever it’s validity gets to six (6) months or below. This is because, NO embassy would issue you with a VISA in a Passport that has six (6) months or less validity. Based on the above, the requirements for RE-ISSUE of Ecowas passport, International Passport or Nigeria Standard Passport, which ever one you choose to call it, includes the following:

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I. The expired or about-to-expire passport booklet
II. Photocopy of the data page of that Passport
III. In the case of filled-up pages, photocopies of ALL the pages of the passport booklet.
IV. APPLICATION FOR RE-ISSUE of the expired; about to expire or filled-up Passport. Which should be addressed to:
The Passport Schedule Officer,
Nigeria Immigration Service,
****** State Command.
V. Two passport photographs of the applicant.
In the application mentioned in IV. above , you MUST State the passport number, whether expired or not, other relevant informations and why you want to be re-issued with a Passport. The process is referred to as RE-ISSUE as against renewal because you are to be issued with a new passport booklet and no longer extension endorsement when renewal was practiced.

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Requirements for Nigeria International (Standard) Passport, fresh application

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International passport Requirements

For the purpose of obtaining Nigeria Standard (International) Passport, the new International Passport regime classified Nigerians into three groups based on age:
A. 0-17years of age: referred to as Minors
B. 18-59years of age: referred to as adults, and
C. 60 years and above: referred to as adult-minors

A. MINORS (0-17 years):
One of the parent or both parent MUST accompany the minor to the nearest Passport office with the following:
I. Birth certificate of the minor, obtained from National Population Commission only. In the case of foreign birth, the birth certificate must be translated to English language if written in foreign language. Note: baptism card or birth certificates from any other source other than National Population Commission is NOT acceptable.
II. Marriage certificate of the parent, obtained from the registry or affidavit of marriage from the court in a situation where the parent did only traditional marriage.
III. Affidavit of single motherhood where applicable
IV. Valid means of identification from both parent. For instance, International Passport, drivers license, national ID card , voter’s card (any one of the documents will suffice)
V. ‘Letter of Consent’, duly signed by both parent. The letter should be addressed to: The Passport Control Officer,
Nigeria Immigration Service,
***** State Command.
VI. Four (4) passport photographs of the minor and two (2) passport photographs EACH from both parent.

B. ADULTS, 18 years to 59 years of age:
I. Local government identification from the applicant’s state of origin
II. Birth certificate from National Population Commission for adults born on or after November 1992. Any adult born before then may present affidavit of age if he or she doesn’t have birth certificate from National Population Commission. Baptism card or any other birth certificate is not acceptable.
III. Three (3) Passport photographs from the adult.
In addition to the above, the adult MUST also get a Guarantor, who must be an adult Nigerian. The Guarantor is expected to provide the applicant with the following:
IV. Photocopy of his or her valid International Passport
V. Photocopy of his or her valid driver’s license; national ID card; or voter’s card ( any two of the aforementioned documents) , and
VI. Two (2) passport photographs ( signed at the back)

C. ADULT-MINOR (60 years and above):
The requirements is like that of adults as stated above. The only difference is that they pay the same fees with minors.

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C.E.R.P.A.C: eligibility and general requirements

The above acronym means Combined Expatriate Residence Permit and Aliens Card. It is also referred to as ‘Regularisation of Stay’ (Residence Permits). It’s a (green) card issued to Expatriates and their dependants, foreign students, missionaries/clerics and their dependants, research fellows and other categories of foreigners (other than ECOWAS nationals) who wishes to reside in Nigeria and carry out their trade legitimately.
ELIGIBILITY:
I. Expatriate employees of companies and their dependants.
II. Foreign students
III. Expatriate technical officials
IV. Missionaries/clerics and their dependants
V. Research fellows
VI. Expatriate staff of non governmental organizations (NGOs) and their dependants
VII. Government officials (Gos) and their dependants
VIII. Expatriate staff of International non governmental organizations (INGOs)
IX. Expatriates employed by companies operating in Free Trade Zones (FTZ) and their dependants

REQUIREMENTS:
a. Letter of application for regularisation of stay and acceptance of immigration responsibilities by the employer/ school/ embassy or high commission/ international organisations/ NGOs/ INGOs/ MDA (in the case of government officials).
The letter should be addressed to:
The Comptroller-General,
Nigeria Immigration Service,
Sauka village,
Abuja. (For those applying at the service headquarters)
Or:
The Comptroller,
Nigeria Immigration Service
****** State Command,
****** State Command. (For those applying through State commands)
The caption should be: Application for CERPAC/ Regularisation of Stay. The body of the application should introduce the expatriate stating his intended designation in the organisation. The organisation should as well State categorically, the acceptance of immigration responsibilities (IR) on behalf of the expatriate. The letter must be written with the organisation’s official letter-headed paper.
b. The biodata page of the expatriate’s passport
c. Four passport photographs of the expatriate
d. Copy of STR (Subject to Regularisation) visa page
e. Copy of arrival endorsement page ie the SOA (seen on arrival) stamp endorsement made on the passport at the point of entry.
f. Form IMM 22 (visa application form)
g. Expatriate’s valid national passport (ie the physical booklet, which must not have less than six months validity)
h. Evidence of purchase of CERPAC form (Bank teller).
There are categories of applicants and the following requirements (in addition to the above requirements) shall be applicable:
a. Expatriate technical officials of missions
I. Letter of employment
II. Letter of acceptance of employment
b. Expatriate employees of companies and their dependants
I. Letter of offer of employment
II. Letter of acceptance of employment
III. VETTED academic credentials/qualifications
IV. Resume
V. Copy of valid Quota approval
VI. Certificate of incorporation
VII. Marriage certificate (for married women)
VIII. Board of directors resolution (applicable for the appointment of CEOs and managing directors)
IX. Evidence of registration with relevant professional bodies in Nigeria (where applicable)
X. Business Permit of the company
C. Foreign Student
I. Admission letter
II. Letter of acceptance of admission
III. Evidence of payment of school fees
D. Missionaries/ clerics and their dependants
I. Letter of offer of employment
II. Letter of acceptance of employment
E. Research Fellows
I. Letter of offer of Research fellowship
II. Letter of acceptance of Research fellowship
F. Expatriates employed by companies operating in Free Trade Zones (FTZ) and their dependants
I. Letter from the FTZ management
II. Certificate of registration with the Nigerian Export Processing Zone Authority (NEPZA) or oil & gas FTZ
III. Operating license
IV. Letter of employment
V. Letter of acceptance of employment
VI. Certificate of incorporation
VII. Marriage certificate (where applicable)
VIII. Board of directors resolution (for the appointment of CEOs and managing directors)
Ix. Evidence of registration with relevant professional bodies in Nigeria
(Where applicable)

FEES:
Naira equivalent of $1000 (one thousand US dollars) per annum for all categories of expatriate and
Naira equivalent of $400 (four hundred US dollars) per annum for students and missionaries.
Other administrative charges may also be applicable for processing the application.

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Why We Love Human Smuggling (And You Should, Too)

‘Trafficking in Person’ refers to situations whereby people are coerced, threatened or deceived into exploitative situations, for instance prostitution. Human trafficking also known as Modern Slavery includes forced labour and sex trafficking. Palermo Protocol described compelled service ( forced labour) using a number of terms including: Slavery, or practices similar to Slavery; Debt Bondage and Involuntary Servitude.
On the other hand, Human Smuggling implies that a migrant voluntarily pays to circumvent immigration restrictions, without necessarily being a victim of deception or exploitation. It is often difficult to distinguish between what is voluntary and what is forced except in clear cases of Slavery.
Most atimes, we hear cases where the victims are being asked by friends and relatives to go and acquire Nigerian Standard Passport ( a.k.a International Passport) and also to make available a specified amount of money to aid there trip to the destination. The victims are often promised of a secured job when they get to their destination. Most times, on getting there, they ( the victims) realise that there are no jobs and when they are even provided with jobs, it would be on exploitative arrangements and agreements. Exploitative arrangements in the sense that the victims may be engaged while the proceeds of their labour would go to the Traffickers for an agreed number of years. Meanwhile in such circumstances, the Traffickers would seize the victim’s travel documents on getting to their destination pending when the agreed terms are met.
Human Traffickers employ so many tactics, the one mentioned above is only but one of them. You can share knowledge with us by commenting or writing us to educate people on dangers associated with IRREGULAR MIGRATION. Follow us on social media and help us to SHARE this piece for wider reach.

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Re-issue (Renewal) of Residence Permit/Card

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CERPAC Form

 

After the expiration of the CERPAC Card ( green card ) , that is after one (1) year, it must be renewed ( re-issued ). The requirements for the renewal of Residence Permit includes the following:

  1. Application for renewal of Residence Permits by the employer accepting Immigration Responsibilities.
  2. Copy of the valid Quota approval.
  3. Photocopy of passport biodata page of the applicant
  4. Expatriate’s current CERPAC Card ( ie the expired one)
  5. Purchase of CERPAC Form ( Bank Teller)
  6. Two (2) recent passport photographs of the applicant
  7. Valid national passport

Applications for renewal of Residence Permit shall be submitted to the office of: The Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service Headquarters, Abuja or to the office of: The Comptroller of Immigration Service at the State Command where the expatriate is resident.

The Fees are as follows: Naira equivalent of One thousand US Dollars ($1000) per annum for all categories of Expatriates; and Naira equivalent of Four hundred ($400) US Dollars for students and missionaries.

Failure to renew one’s CERPAC Card after expiration will automatically put the expatriate on the wrong side of the law, thereby making him or her  “Illegal Immigrant”. Embarrassment is inevitable for illegal immigrants.

 

 

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CERPAC: categories of Expatriates

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C.E.R.P.A.C/ Green card

1. Government Officials (Gos): expatriates in the employment of federal, state or local government falls under this category.The requirements for one to apply for regularisation of stayunder this category includes:
I. Letter of application for regularisation of stay and acceptance of Immigration responsibilities by the MDAs.
II. Letter of offer of employment
III. Letter of acceptance of employment
IV. Vetted academic credentials/ qualifications
V. Resume
VI. Marriage certificate (for married women)
VII. Evidence of registration with relevant professional bodies in Nigeria (where applicable)
VIII. Copy of passport biodata page of the expatriate
IX. Copy of STR Visa page and arrival endorsement page.
X. Form IMM 22 (visa application form)
XI. Three (3) recent passport photographs
XII. Physical booklet of expatriate’s valid national passport (not less than six months validity)

The application must be addressed toTheComptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service headquarters Abuja or to The Comptroller of Immigration Service at the state Command where the applicant is resident.

Fee:
GRATIS (ie free of charge)
2. Accredited Diplomats: Multiple Journey Re-entry Visa
Accredited Diplomats and their family members are eligible under this category. Their requirements includes the following:
I. Note verbale from ministry of foreign affairs
II. Letter of request from the embassy/ high commission/ International agency
III. Form IMM 22 (visa application form)
IV. Diplomatic staff list
V. Copies of relevant biodata pages of the expatriate’s national passport and
VI. Diplomatic entry visa
VII. Physical booklet of the applicant’s national passport

The applications for Residence Permit (CERPAC) shall be submitted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the office of The Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service, headquarters, Abuja.

Fee:
Gratis

For NON-ACCREDITED staff of Diplomatic Mission, consultants and contractors working for Missions, there application s for Residence Permit shall be submitted by their employer to the office of The Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service, Headquarters, Abuja.
And the Fee is one thousand U.S Dollar per annum ($1000).
3. Staff of International non-governmental Organisations (INGO) and Non-governmental Organisations (NGOs):
The requirements for those that fall under this category includes:
I. Letter of accreditation from the Ministry of Budget and National Planning
II. Application letter from the organisation accepting Immigration Responsibilities
III. Duly completed Form IMM 22
IV. Memorandum of understanding/ Corporation agreement with National Planning Commission
V. Letter of offer
VI. Letter of acceptance of offer
VII. Vetted credentials
VIII. Contract validity
IX. Copies of relevant pages of the applicant’s national passport and STR visa page
X. Three (3) recent passport size photographs
XI. Physical booklet of national passport of the applicant.

The application for Residence Permit shall be submitted to the office of the Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service, Headquarters, Abuja.

Fees:
INGOs: Gratis
NGOs: $1000 per annum

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ECOWAS RESIDENCE CARD

This is a kind of ‘residence’ permit issued to ECOWAS nationals to allow them reside legally in Nigeria. Residence Card grants it’s holder all the Rights and Privileges as contained in the ECOWAS PROTOCOL. For one to qualify to obtain Residence Card from Nigeria Immigration Service, he or she must meet-up with the following requirements:
i. Letter of Identification from Employers (for an employee) stating clearly of their relationship with the applicant and also willingness to accept Immigration Responsibility (I.R) on behalf of the applicant. The same is applicable to students from Ecowas countries studying in Nigeria.
ii. Valid travel documents eg ETC or countries national passport (preferably countries passport).
iii. Two passport photographs
iv. Evidence of business registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission in accordance with C.A.M.A of 1990 (for a business owner)
v. Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) must be satisfied that the applicant entered Nigeria through approved Port of Entry or Border (with evidence(s) of ‘proper’ endorsements/documentation by Nigeria Immigration Service).

Front View
Inside View
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ECOWAS TRAVEL CERTIFICATE (E.T.C)

This is a type of travel certificate issued to Nigerians (by Nigeria Immigration Service) who intend to travel WITHIN Ecowas subregion. It is ONLY valid for travel within the Ecowas subregion. Ecowas Travel Certificate (E.T.C) serves dual purpose, namely:
i. Passport: it is a recognized travel document valid for travels WITHIN countries that are signatories to the Ecowas Treaty.
ii. Form of Identity: It can be held concurrently with the Standard Nigeria Passport (or any of our National Passports). This proves that the holder is a ‘community’ (Nigerian) citizen.
The certificate can be obtained at the service headquarters, thirty-six (36) state commands and F.C.T office of NIS. E.T.C has a validity of two (2) years and shall be renewable for a further period of two (2) years. ETC could be replaced or amended if:
i. It is mutilated in any form or requires amendment
ii. If it is confirmed lost or stolen
iii. If the pages are exhausted while the Certificate is still valid
iv. If it has lasted for the four (4) years total validity period.

 

ECOWAS TREATY
Economic Community of West Africa States (E.C.O.W.A.S) was established in May 1975 to foster the economic integration and shared development of West African subregion. It’s member States includes:
1. Togo
2. Liberia
3. Mali
4. Niger
5. Nigeria
6. Senegal
7. Sierra Leone
8. Equitorial Guinea
9. Benin Republic
10. Burkina Faso
11. Cape Verde
12. Cote d’ Ivoire
13. Gambia
14. Guinea Bissau
15. Guinea
16. Ghana.

ECOWAS PROTOCOL STIPULATES:
A. Free Entry within 90 Days: all nationals of member states are entitled to ninety (90) days of stay in another member state. Provided the person has a valid travel documents e.g country’s passport or Ecowas Travel Certificate (issued by the Ecowas national’s country). Admission into the host country MUST be through approved Port of Entry.
B. Right of Residence: All Ecowas nationals with valid travel document who enters the host country through approved Port of Entry has the right to reside there upon procurement of residence card (valid for five (5) years subject to passport validity).
C. Right of Establishment of Business: All nationals (ECOWAS) in possession of ETC or country’s passport, admitted into the host country through approved Port of Entry and haven procured Residence Card are entitled to this Right of Establishment of Business. In addition to registration of business with the Corporate Affairs Commission (in accordance with Companies and Allied Matters Act of 1990).

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PROCEDURE FOR PASSPORT (ONLINE) APPLICATION

Nigeria Standard Passport

 

1. Visit the home page of Nigeria Immigration Service (i.e www.immigration.gov.ng)
2. Locate passport on the menu and click on it
3. Scroll down to passport (sub-menu) and click on ‘apply for epassport’ button
i. Select a passport type “Standard epassport” (that’s the option for everyday Nigerians like you and I) OR “Official epassport” . It is always advisable to select “Standard epassport” option to avoid regrets.
ii. Select the processing country, where you wish to process the passport.
4. Fill the application form, endeavor to select the ‘processing state’ where you will like to go for the physical capturing of your biometrics. Also remember to select the number of passport pages you are applying for (i.e 32 or 64 pages respectively), because their fee varies (refer to “passport fees” section under ‘Application Fees’ menu on the official home page of Immigration website). The number of pages selected on the application form will determine the amount you are going to pay at the BANK.
i. After completing the application form, crosscheck it thoroughly to make sure that the data you supplied are correct before you check the ‘I ACCEPT FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE INFORMATION PROVIDED IN THIS FORM’.
ii. On the issue of ‘colour of eyes’ and ‘colour of hair’, brown and black respectively is always the default.
iii. Choose your title accordingly but DO NOT attach it to either your SURNAME or OTHER NAMES.
5. Click on “print” button to print the completed form.
6. Click on “submit Application” button to view ‘Applicant details page’
i. Remember to PRINT the completed form before submitting the application.
7. Click on “proceed to online payment”
8. Click to select payment currency “pay in Naira” or “pay in Dollars” option
Ai. If you are applying in Nigeria you MUST pay in Naira
ii. Whereas if you are applying in any other country, you MUST pay in Dollars
iii. If you selected the option to pay in Naira, you will be prompted to select the payment type (payment method): “Bank”, “Credit or Debit Card”. Choose the one convenient for you.
iv. If you intend to pay at the bank (preferable), select “Bank” and click continue (view the list of participating banks and then click on ‘continue’).
v. Click the “Print Acknowledgement” button to print the payment acknowledgement slip that you MUST take to the bank. The Acknowledgement slip contains ‘Transaction ID, ‘Application ID & ‘Reference Number’. With that slip, proceed to a participating bank for payment. (DO NOT CLOSE THIS PAGE ON YOUR COMPUTER BECAUSE THAT’S WHERE YOU’RE GOING TO CONTINUE YOUR APPLICATION PROCESS AFTER A SUCCESSFUL PAYMENT AT THE BANK. JUST ‘REFRESH’ THE PAGE AFTER PAYMENT AND ENSURE THAT “PAYMENT CONFIRMED” IS DISPLAYED BEFORE PRINTING).
vi. On making payment at the bank, you MAY be issued with an ‘approved payment platform provider’ receipt/slip that contains a “Validation Number”.
B. If you intend to pay through Credit/Debit Card, select “Credit/Debit Card” and click continue,
i. Follow the instructions and fill in your details
ii. If the payment was successful, the “Validation Number” is generated. “store/Save” it and use it to confirm your payment (on the Immigration web portal). Note: you can print this receipt/slip that contains the validation number.
USING YOUR VALIDATION NUMBER (Which may no longer be obtainable):
9. After payment (having obtained the “validation number”), go back to the NIS web portal for confirmation of payment.
i. Go to the “Query your application payment status” and enter your passport Application ID and Reference No.
ii. If a “validation number” field appears please enter the number from your ‘approved payment platform provider’ receipt.
Note: validation number has been generated after payment through the bank.
iii. You can now PRINT a receipt or an Acknowledgement Slip by using the ‘print’ button on this page. The e-receipt that will be printed MUST be showing “PAYMENT CONFIRMED” on it.
10. For payment outside of Nigeria and other information concerning online passport application guidelines, visit: portal.immigration.gov.ng/pages/passportguidelines or passport fees (under “Application Fees” menu) on www.immigration.gov.ng
“NOTE: If the ‘validation number’ is not given to you after payment, just go back to the web portal and refresh that page where you printed the acknowledgement slip that you took to Bank for payment. The e-receipt that shows “payment Confirmed” should be displayed if your payment was successful, endeavor to PRINT it.”
11. Please to avoid paying twice, if you can’t make the online payment yourself, visit any NIS State Command nearest to you with the other requirements earlier mentioned for assistance.
Please Note: The PRINTOUTS NEEDED after a successful payment;
I. Your completed data pages must be printed out (it must contain a column for your signature, don’t sign it until you’re asked to sign it at the passport office).
II. Secondly, the acknowledgement slip that you took to Bank for payment.
III. Thirdly, the acknowledgement slip/e-receipt (that MUST display “payment confirmed”) that you printed after returning from Bank and going back to the web portal to complete your application. (Remember to affix a postal stamp on this page).
IV. To print the guarantor’s form, click “Apply Online” menu, scroll to ‘passport’ submenu and select “Guarantor’s Form”. Enter your passport Application ID & Reference Number in the appropriate field and click ‘Submit’. The guarantors form will display, endeavor to print it. Take the COURT page of the guarantor’s form to court for commissioner of oath’s endorsement.
Note: The Guarantor must be an adult that possesses all the requirements needed (refer to 1a under: Types of Passport in Nigeria).

Package all the requirements mentioned earlier (previous publication(s)) together with the printouts (if you made the online payment yourself).
Acquisition of Standard Nigeria Passport is NOT done by proxy, beware of fraudsters (YOU MUST APPEAR BEFORE A PASSPORT OFFICER, IN-PERSON FOR YOUR BIOMETRICS TO BE CAPTURED).
Avoid patronizing ‘Touts’ (under any guise), insist on being taken to the passport office. Don’t deal with people outside the office. Go for people in COMPLETE uniform and make sure you capture the person’s name from his or her ‘name tag’.
It is always advisable to make the PAYMENT and ASSEMBLE other requirements YOURSELF. But if you can’t make the payment yourself, you can seek assistance from officers at the passport office or any SERVING IMMIGRATION OFFICER. Endeavor to go with ALL the requirements.

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2. Diplomatic Passport (Red Cover):

This type of Passport is issued by Nigeria Immigration Service ONLY to individuals on diplomatic assignment for the country.
Requirements for diplomatic passport
i. Letter of introduction from applicant’s ministry, parastatal or extra-ministerial department
ii. Two passport photographs

3. Official Passport (Blue Cover): Nigeria Immigration Service issues this type of passport ONLY to those individuals embarking on ‘official’ assignment abroad.
Requirements for official passport
A i. Letter of introduction from applicant’s ministry, parastatal or extra-ministerial department duly signed by an officer not below the rank of a director or
ii. Secretary to State Government in case of an employee of state government.

B. Two passport photographs
C. Marriage certificate (for married women)
D. Letter of appointment/ Last promotion

4. Pilgrims Passport (colour varies from year to year for security reasons):
Nigeria Immigration Service issues this type of passport ONLY to Nigerians intending to go on pilgrimage to the Holy lands. Pilgrims passport has six (6) months validity ONLY.
5. MRP-Seaman’s Book or Certificate of Identity (Maroon Cover):
Nigeria Immigration Service issue Seaman’s Book ONLY to Nigerians who work on ocean going vessels or water crafts. Most Nigerians refer to it as Seaman’s Passport.
Requirements for Seaman’s Book
i. Refer to 1A (Standard Nigeria Passport- Adults) above.

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PASSPORTS AND OTHER TRAVEL DOCUMENTS

According to Wikipedia, a passport is a travel document usually issued by a country’s government that certifies the identity and nationality of it’s holder for the purpose of international travel (and other business transactions). Standard passports contain the holders name, place and date of birth, photogragh, signature and other identifying information. The Standard Nigeria Passport (popularly known as International passport or Ecowas passport by many Nigerians) has the biometric information of the holder in a microchip embedded in the document (that is why it is sometimes referred to as electronic passport or e-passport), making them Machine Readable and very difficult to counterfeit.
Types of passports in Nigeria
1. Standard Nigeria Passport (green cover): This is the most commonly used travel document in Nigeria. For one to qualify to acquire Standard Nigeria Passport, the person must be a Nigerian by birth, naturalization and registration. No Nigerian is allowed to hold multiple Standard passports and all Standard passports have a life span of Ten (10) years with an initial validity of five (5) years. Upon expiration, the holder goes back for Re-issue (and no longer renewal).

Front View
Back View

Requirements for obtaining a Standard Nigeria Passport:
A. Adults (18 years and above):
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Birth certificate or Affidavit of Age declaration
– Letter of Identification from local government of origin or residence
– Marriage certificate for a married woman

The Applicant must also download guarantor’s form from NIS web portal and the form must be:
– Completed by the guarantor and duly signed and taken to court for commissioner of oath’s endorsement.
– The guarantor must give the applicant photocopies of: (i) Data page of his/her Standard Nigeria Passport and (ii) National Identity Card or Driver’s license ( any two of the three documents mentioned)
– The guarantor must also give the applicant one (1) of his/her passport photograph (signed at the back).
NOTE: birth certificate as mentioned earlier refers to the one being issued by the National Population Commission and NOT Baptismal cards from any church or birth certificate from any Hospital.
– Secondly, if the applicant cannot download the guarantor’s form, he/she should at least endeavor to collect the other requirements from the guarantor
– The guarantor need not appear before the passport officer with the applicant.

B. Minors (0-17 years):
– Three (3) passport photographs
– Birth Certificate (from National Population Commission)
– Letters of consent from BOTH parents (or from a surviving parent, if the other is deceased)
– Marriage certificate (or affidavit of fact, with regards to traditional marriage or Islamic marriage)
– At least one (1) means of identification each from both parents (e.g data page of passports, drivers’ license, national identity card, voters card)
– One (1) passport photograph each from both parents
– Death certificate (For a minor whose parent or parents are deceased). The surviving parent/guardian accompanying the minor must present the death certificate(s) of the deceased parent(s)
– At least one of the parent(s) must accompany the minor to the passport office.

C. Loss Case:
– Police extract (from police station)
– Affidavit of loss (from court)
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Photocopy of data page of the lost passport
– Application for re-issue of lost passport (addressed to: The Comptroller, of the state command where it will be processed)

D. Case of damage:
– The applicant must go to the passport office with the damaged passport
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Application letter for re-issue of damaged passport.
NOTE: It is at discretion of the passport officer of the state command to address the issue or refer the applicant to the service headquarters.

E. Re-issue of expired passport:
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Photocopy of the data page of the expired passport
– Application letter for re-issue of expired passport (addressed to: The passport Schedule Officer; Nigeria Immigration Service; of the state command where one is routing his/her application).

F. Filled-up passport pages (before the expiration of the passport):
– Photocopy of the data page
– Photocopies of ALL the pages (that has endorsements, whether seen on arrival, S.O.A; seen on departure, S.O.D; visas; etc etc)
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Application letter for re-issue of filled-up passport ( addressed to: The passport schedule officer)

G. Change of data (as a result of marriage):
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Photocopy of data page of her Standard Nigeria Passport
– Marriage certificate
– Newspaper publication portraying the change of name
– Application letter (for change of data due to marriage), addressed to: The Passport Schedule Officer of the processing state.
– Photocopy of husband’s Standard Nigeria Passport (data page) or any other means of identification from her husband e.g. driver’s license or national ID card.

H. Change of data (as a result of family or personal change of name): This is at the discretion of the passport officer
– Two (2) passport photographs
– Photocopy of Standard Nigeria Passport (a.k.a International passport)
– Newspaper publication
– ‘WAEC’ or First School Leaving Certificate (or both) and other academic certificates bearing the name
– Application letter for change of data.

NOTE: that in the cases related to 1 E, F, G & H above, the PHYSICAL passport booklet MUST be presented to the passport officer.

Special Immigrant Status (eg Niger Wives)

 

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Special Immigrant Status is being conferred to foreign spouses of Nigerians. Niger wife is a term used to refer to a foreigner ( a woman) married to a Nigerian man. Applicants for Special Immigrant Status/ Niger wife shall submit there applications to the office of The Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service Headquarters, Abuja or to The Comptroller of Immigration Service, at the State Command where the applicant is resident with his/ her Nigerian spouse.

The Fee is Gratis, that means it’s free of charge.

The requirements that must be fulfilled to obtain Special Immigrant Status includes:

  1. Application letter for Residence Permit by the Nigerian spouse accepting Immigration Responsibilities.
  2. Copy of Special Immigrant Status approval letter by the Minister of Interior
  3. Husband’s consent letter requesting for Special Immigrant Status/ letter of consent from the Niger wife stating willingness to stay with husband in Nigeria.
  4. Nigerian passport biodata page of spouse
  5. Copy of passport biodata page of the applicant
  6. Marriage certificate
  7. CERPAC form
  8. Three (3) recent passport photographs