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    Monday, February 19, 2024

    Nigerians Beg FG to Provide Passport Printers in New York

    Nigerians in New York have again appealed to the Federal Government to provide passport production printers to the Nigeria Consulate to enhance smooth passport services in the U.S.

    The concerned Nigerians made the call at a virtual 12th Town Hall Meeting hosted by the Consulate for the Nigerian Community under its jurisdiction.

    The New York Jurisdiction comprises the 20 states of Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Nebraska, Ohio and North Dakota.

    Others are South Dakota, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Vermont and Pennsylvania.

    During the question-and-answer segment of the meeting, the Nigerians wondered why the Federal Government would have only one passport production center in the U.S., which is in Washington D.C.

    Nigeria has three missions in the United States, namely: the Consulates-General of Nigeria in New York and Atlanta, and the Embassy of Nigeria in Washington DC.

    The embassy in Washington DC is the only passport production centre in the U.S while the consulates take biometrics and forward same to the Embassy in Washington DC for passport production.

    They questioned the decision to provide two passport production printers in a center that has 10 states under its jurisdiction and none in the New York Consulate, which has 20 states under its jurisdiction.

    According to them, New York Consulate has the highest number of states and accepts the most significant number of applicants across the United States.

    They also questioned the response of the Federal Government to several appeals made on this issue, wondering if money is the issue to get the machines, expressing willingness to task themselves to get the machines.

    Similarly, the moderator of the meeting, Mr. Olayinka DanSalami, shared the same sentiments with the concerned Nigerians, noting that his organisation and its partners had recently called the attention of the Federal Government to it.

    The Organisation for the Advancement of Nigerians (OAN) and 20 partners in New York had on Feb. 6 appealed to the Federal Government to install passport production printers at the consulates in New York and Atlanta.

    In a letter addressed to Nigeria’s Minister of Interior, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, on behalf of the partner organisations, OAN, expressed concern over the lack of printers at the two consulates.

    Dansalami, a Board Member of OAN, however, called on more Nigerian associations to join in the campaign of demanding the provision of the machines to enhance improved consular services in the two consulates.

    In his response, the Consul General of Nigeria in New York, Amb. Lot Egopija thanked the concerned Nigerians for their passion, hoping the machines would be delivered to the Consulate soon.

    “We have informed the Government, and we have been assured that they will provide the passport production printers to New York and Atlanta Consulates in the next face of passport production machines issuance.

    Earlier, the Nigerian envoy thanked the nationals for their commitment to attending the Town Hall Meeting, which has helped in getting feedback from them.

    “We have done our best to see that our nationals get their passports within the stipulated time,’’ he said. NAN

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