The Nigerian in Diaspora Organisation Europe (NIDO-Europe) has lamented that the scarcity of passports is affecting no fewer than 1.5 million Nigerians in Italy.
Chairman of its Italian chapter, Mr. George Omo-Iduhon, stated this, yesterday, while reflecting on the activities of NIDOE in Europe and Italy.
He said the shortage of passports for applicants had frustrated movements and efforts by Nigerians to secure work permits in Italy.
Omo-Iduhon said the supply of 500 booklets of passports to the Nigerian embassy in Italy was grossly inadequate to serve the number of Nigerians resident in Italy. He said there were more Nigerians in Italy than in any other European country. He said there were three million Nigerians documented or registered in the database in Italy, aside the undocumented ones.
He appealed to the Federal Government to wade into the matter and make passports available to those in need of it.
“One of the major problems faced by Nigerians living in Italy is shortage of Nigerian passports that can help facilitate their movement and work permit. The Nigerian government should help address this nagging problem because Italy serves as the gateway to other countries in Europe, especially for Nigerians.
“About 1.5 million Nigerians in Italy don’t have passports, even some of those that have been accepted by the Italian government have not been issued Nigerian passports which makes it difficult for them to work.
“Using the same sharing formula for all the counties in Europe cannot work in Italy where we have more Nigerians. We are appealing to relevant government agencies and the Minister for Internal Affairs, Rauf Aregbesola to help us address this issue.”
Omo-Iduhon said NIDOE was planning to build a multi-million dollar ‘Diaspora Village’ in Nigeria as part of efforts to encourage Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into the country. He said NIDOE would require a vast portion of land for the project, adding that it would encourage many Nigerians to come back and contribute meaningfully to the economy.
“We are proposing to build a multi-million dollar Diaspora Village in Nigeria, to be located in Lagos. We want to do more for our country, so we thought it wise to establish a ‘Diaspora Village’ where we can have land to farm and also have our housing estate. The major mission of NIDOE is home development and the enormous remittances Nigerians in Europe have made in recent times cannot be compared to that of other continents,” he said.
He said many Nigerians in Europe, especially those in Italy, have thriving legitimate businesses and want to give back to their country.
“Most Nigerians abroad have been swindled by those they trusted to facilitate businesses for them, while those that were contracted to build houses for them failed to execute the project. Our end goal and the necessity for the project is to restore the confidence of Nigerians in Diaspora to come back and build Nigeria’s economy,” Omo-Iduhon said.
The post Passport scarcity affecting 1.5m Nigerians in Italy –NIDOE appeared first on The Sun Nigeria.