Immigration boss cautions politicians who avoids security checks at airports

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The Comptroller General (CG) Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Muhammad Babandede on Tuesday cautioned that all Nigerians irrespective of status must subject themselves to security checks by immigration officers.

Muhammad who lamented that many politicians pass through borders without security checks by immigration officers warned that those involved in the act should desist or face the law.

He spoke in Abuja at the official decoration ceremony of 14 newly promoted Assistant Comptroller’s General (ASG’s).

The immigration boss also vowed to deal with any immigration officer who assists any politician to avoid security checks.

Muhammad advised the promoted ACG’s to ensure that they offer serious supervision, especially at the borders and Airports and ensure that the rule of law is adhered to.

His words: “In recent time, some politicians and big men think they can pass through borders without passing through immigration officers.

“It is an offence under the Act, we are committed. You are liable to punishment regardless of whoever you are.

“You and the officer involved will be prosecuted because officers don’t have immunity because it is a law that a person must present himself and pass through immigration.

“Even if an aircraft does an emergency landing and lands in a place other than recognised spot, let’s say an aircraft mistakenly lands in Illorin because of emergency it is the duty of the captain of the aircraft and the passengers to wait to be cleared by immigration officers, if you enter it is an offence.”

He added: “Talk less of you come to Aminu Kano Airport, or Murtala Muhammed Airport or Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport and then work together with officers and cross the border without presenting yourself when departing or entering Nigeria it is an offence.

“We will punish such persons. The last warming I want to give you and ensure you supervise very well is the issue of travel documents. We find out that Immigration officers are becoming brokers.

“We cannot allow that, you cannot be a regulator and a broker at the same time it’s not possible.

“For the avoidance of doubt we have an officer who is being prosecuted somebody came to get a passport the person said he lost his passport that officer was the one who got an affidavit for him, went to court together with the person.

“All persons who lied and declared their passports missing we have started arresting, in the last few months we have arrested as many as 15.

“If you lose your passport and later find it, return it to Immigration to cancel it. Any passport lost and you decide to use it at the border we will arrest you and prosecute you for false declaration.”

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