Tuesday, July 29, 2014 4:32 am
Abuja – The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), has urged the Federal Government to equip it with Censors to enable the department effectively police the nation’s 1,400 kilometres borders.
Mr Chukwuemeka Obua, the Public Relations Officer of the service, made the call on Monday in Abuja in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
He said due to the expansive size of the borders and the inability of immigration officers to effectively patrol them, the service had forwarded a proposal to the government to provide it with modern technological equipment like censors.
He said the censors would be placed at strategic locations at the borders to pick up mass or single movement of people in certain areas where immigration officers could not reach.
“Illegal routes in Nigeria are vast and some persons may think they can move without being noticed.
“The equipment will pick their movement and relay it to immigration formations that will deploy personnel to intercept such movement.
“ To make up for inadequate human capital at the borders, a special border patrol corps has been established.
“The first set of 1,000 officers have been trained with relevant skills and dispersed to different formations to man the borders.
“The government has also granted permission for the resuscitation of the air border patrol unit.
“The service has two or three aircrafts that are currently being repaired to augment the special censors and the border patrol corps,’’ Obua said.
The NIS spokesman told NAN that the proposed amendment to the Immigration Act of 2004 would prescribe stiffer penalties for illegal immigrants in the country to forestall crime.
He added that if the Act is amended; kidnappers, scammers, human traffickers and prostitutes would face severe punishment when they are caught.
He said that such offenders had not been receiving adequate punishment because the Immigration Act of 2004 did not stipulate severe punishment for serious crimes.
“ The act proffers a fine of N100 for offences that are serious and this is outdated.
“ The Immigration Act of 2004 is currently undergoing amendment because it does not prescribe stiff penalties for offences,’’ he said.