Oyogist.com has learned that Italy based Nigerians have cried out over the scarcity of the Nigerian passport, a situation they say has seen many of them being disengaged from work for failing to produce valid passports on demand.
The affected Nigerians, under the aegies of National Union of Nigerians Associations in Italy (NUNAI) in an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, signed by its President, Rowland Ndukuba, appealed to the Nigerian authorities to ensure the regular supply of passports to the Nigerian embassy in Italy to enable citizens renew their passports.
“This appeal has become necessary as a lot of Nigerians are being stopped from their various jobs because they are unable to present a valid passport to renew their working contract and their residency to stay in Italy,” Ndukuba said in the letter.
Ndukuba also directed the Union’s appeal to the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Interior, as well as the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) adding that the inability of Nigerians to renew their passports was threatening the members’ livelihood.
“NUNAI wishes to lay a very strong appeal to the Ministers of Interior and Foreign Affairs, including the Controller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, to save thousands of Nigerians living in Italy,” the group stated.
The group, however, acknowledged that the Nigerian embassy in Rome “is doing everything possible to clear the backlog of seven months on the ground as those that were scanned in the middle of May to date are yet to get their passport printing.”
“From our investigations, the Nigerian embassy in Rome captured nothing less than 3,000 Nigerians in a month for passport, and the mission received passport booklets of 1,500, 1,000, and even 500 on an irregular monthly basis.
“But the situation would have been manageable if the supply was even regular on a monthly basis.
“The lack of booklets to produce those captured already is one reason we are making this appeal. On behalf of all Nigerians in Italy, the union will be very grateful if our appeal is urgently granted.”