The Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) has commenced Saturdays and Sundays Services at its passport office in Ikeja.
Rose Bukar, a passport control officer of the NIS, who disclosed the development in a chat with newsmen on Saturday, said the decision was taken to speed up service delivery to applicants.
She said the NIS aims to spend less time processing fresh passport applications.
“We want to ensure that applicants spend less time processing passports. We shall also continue to initiate measures that will enhance smooth and fast service to Nigerians.
This weekend, we witnessed an unexpected turn-up of applicants, but we paid special attention to the vulnerable ones.
The Nigerian Immigration Service has introduced some special compassionate measures for the vulnerable, especially those with health challenges, the elderly, the heavily pregnant, and those living with disabilities.
In the last seven days, about 800 passports were produced. I am optimistic that with more capturing devices, the queue will gradually diminish”, she said, adding that the Lagos passport office has reached “a state of equilibrium” on the backlog of passport applications.
Burka also disclosed that the office has cleared all the passport applications submitted in September.
“The office has cleared passport applications up to those submitted in September.
But, I want Nigerians to understand that applying for a fresh passport requires a minimum of six weeks; those seeking to refresh will have to give us three weeks”, she added.
She implored Nigerians to always permit the Service to carry out necessary investigation on the application anytime they came to apply.
“The Nigerian passport is the security architecture of the person holding it; there is no shortcut to these security checks. All Nigerians should take note of this”, she declared.
In October, the agency said 13,800 passports were yet to be collected at the Lagos passport command.