By ZUBAIRU IDRIS
KATSINA-President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) to tighten security around the nation’s borders before and after the general elections.
Interior minister Rauf Aregbesola disclosed this in Katsina on Tuesday while inaugurating the Katsina State headquarters of the service.
“The order from the President Muhammadu Buhari is that between now and the time we will conclude elections, you must make sure our borders are secured.
“You must make sure that our borders are perfectly secured from illegal immigrants who may want to come in to create problems during elections, or illegally participating in the elections.
“The service should live up to the directives of Mr President,” he said.
The minister also tasked them on ensuring the documentation of all migrants.
Aregbesola said that Katsina State had 400 kilometers border lines and 14 border positions which the service needed to protect.
He said that government was upgrading the capacity of the NIS to effectively control the nation’s borders.
“We are deploying electronic digital technology to ensure 24/7 surveillance of the 5,000 kilometers border lines.
“We have already awarded the contract, so, very soon, the Comptroller-General, from his office, will be able to see what is happening anytime at any border point,” he said.
In his remarks, Gov. Aminu Masari, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Muntari Lawal, commended the NIS for the project and affirmed the administration’s readiness to support the service to secure the nation’s borders.
Also speaking, the State Controller, Mr Bello Garba, who reiterated the commitment of officers and men to their responsibilities, said that the service currently had 688 officers and men across the state.
He listed key functions of NIS to include issuance of traveling documents to qualified Nigerians, controlling the movement of migrants after entering, and preventing illegal migrants from coming in.
Other functions include warding off persons seeking to come into Nigeria through illegal routes, and apprehending human traffickers.(NAN)