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Nigerians In Mexico Lament Years Of Delay In Renewing Their Passports

Members of the Nigeria in Diaspora Organisation, Mexico (NIDO Mexico) said it has been difficult for Nigerians to continue with certain critical plans as a result of the delay.

According to a report by SaharaReporters, some Nigerians in Mexico have lamented the delay in the renewal of their passports by the Nigerian embassy in the North American country. 

Members of the Nigeria in Diaspora Organisation, Mexico (NIDO Mexico) said it has been difficult for Nigerians to continue with certain critical plans as a result of the delay. 

One of them said for three years, there were delays by the embassy towards passport renewal until a story was published by SaharaReporters in April 2021. 

Under the Muhammadu Buhari-led government, Nigerians have faced new challenges in getting passports or renewing old ones. 

In May, the Federal Ministry of Interior declared that from June 1, 2021, the issuance of passports to Nigerians would take six weeks. 

Many Nigerians found this information unsettling. 

Despite the declaration, Nigerians have had to even wait longer to get passports, whether at home or abroad. 

In a save-our-soul request, the Nigerian Community in Mexico decried the failure of the Nigerian Embassy in the country to renew their passports three years after the embassy collected their data.

One of those affected said sequel to SaharaReporters’ story, steps were taken by the Nigerian Immigration officers and details were recaptured in June 2021.

However, while the immigration officers promised to return after six weeks, it’s been over three months without any update. 

She said, “We waited for more than three years without passport renewal. After SaharaReporters’ publication, Immigration promised to come over to Mexico to renew for us.

”Thanks to your publication, they came early June and we were captured. We were promised 6 weeks. Although, we understand the Nigerian factor but, it will be 3 months by next week.

“We have a Nigerian community group and everyone is complaining about how his delay is affecting them. We have no idea when the passport will get to us.

“Personally, I am trying to work out permanent residency in Canada and this has been causing me a lot of delays.”

She added that one of the affected persons had contacted the office in Abuja and confirmed from Immigration officers that the passports had yet to be printed. 

”It is sad we’re from a country that doesn’t care for her citizens,” she added. 

However, she stated that the embassy is issuing a letter of introduction as a means of identification at a relatively expensive rate. 

She noted that these letters cannot, however, substitute for the passport in some instances. 

”And those letters are not cheap; the executives of NIDO Mexico have been lamenting. People are using these letters now as a temporary substitute for the passport so they don’t get deported and for some other purposes. However, it doesn’t solve all cases.

“I’m planning to do permanent immigration to Canada and the passport has hindered so many processes. We have to upload a passport. A letter won’t be accepted.”

She further said there are allegations in some quarters that some members of the community have been travelling to Abuja, Nigeria and bribing people to get their passports done. 

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