NIS Apprehends 2 Girls Over Alleged Altered Passports

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By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos


Two Cairo bound ladies have been held by operatives of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) over alleged possession of passports that have been tampered with.
Our correspondent learnt that they were apprehended at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport when they were about to board a Cairo- Egypt bound Egypt Airline flight on 21st January 2021.
They were said to have been detected when the Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) used for scanning their passport refused clearing the tampered passports due to an imposed fake identity of the true holder.
Upon interrogation, the trip was discovered to be an arranged one by their agent identified simply as “Muri”, contrary to claims that they were on business journey to Cairo.
Several calls to his phone number was said to have been unattended to and was alleged to be behind the processing of the tampered passports with a man’s picture on the chip when read by the MIDAS scanner.
The NIS national public relations officer James Sunday, a Deputy Comptroller made the disclosure in a release made available to journalists on Thursday for the Comptroller General.
He stated that the offense is  punishable by the Immigration Act 2015 on Passport related offences relating to Aiding, identity theft and tampering with the passport.       
It reads, ” The Officers of the Nigeria Immigration Service Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja today 21st January 2021 apprehended two(2)girls who were about to board a Cairo-Egypt bound Egypt Airline flight and were detected  when the Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) used for scanning their passport refused clearing the tampered passports due to an imposed fake identity of the true holder. 
They were duly subjected to interrogation when caught against their claim of traveling for Business as the journey was an arranged one by a suspect who they claimed  to be their Agent by name “Muri” whose number was called severally without response, he was alleged to be behind the processing of the tampered passports  with a man’s picture on the chip when read by the MIDAS scanner, an offense punishable by the Immigration Act 2015 on Passport related offences relating to Aiding, identity theft and tampering with the passport.       
The Comptroller General of Nigeria Immigration Service Muhammad Babandede MFR has directed that à thorough investigation be carried out to expose the syndicates behind this act, and the two passports withdrawn as evidence and kept in custody until the agent “Muri” is located. The two girls  by name Adebayo Kolapo Kazeem and Babalola Kehinde are witnesses for the prosecution of the agent, whenever he is found.                      
CGI Babandede therefore warned prospective applicants for the Nigerian passport from allowing criminal elements to take undue advantage of their desperation to perpetrate crimes such as these, that is punishable by imprisonment and or fine in an attempt to procure passport for traveling out of country.                      

The two girls are presently helping the Nigeria Immigration Service with useful informations that will help in the arrest of the agent “Muri” for prosecution of the case”.

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