The Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, has directed the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) to allow Nigerians in diaspora to return to the country with their expired international passports.
Aregbesola gave the directive on Wednesday, in Lagos, while responding to a complaint by a Nigerian-American citizen, Mr Jamui Kasumu, at the Alausa Passport Office during his unscheduled visit to the facility.
He said Nigerians in diaspora were free to come back home with expired or non-expired Nigerian passports.
According to the minister, no Nigerian needs a travel certificate to return home, except children, whose parents were Nigerians, but their identities were yet to be established according to immigration rules.
He emphasised: “I am using this medium to instruct all Nigeria Immigration Officers World-Wide to accord Nigerian travellers with expired Passport use such passports to return safely back home henceforth.”
The minister also implored Nigerians in diaspora to update their travel document ahead of time to avoid rush during emergency.
Earlier, a Nigerian-American citizen, Mr Jamui Kasumu complained to the Minister that the Nigeria Immigration in America and Delta airline prevented him from coming to Nigeria because of an expired Nigerian passport.
Kasumu said he was able to return to Nigeria after he got the travel certificate he obtained through a relationship in Nigeria.
“I am appealing to you, sir, that the immigration should allow Nigerians with expired passports to come back to their country,” he appealed.