With about Eighty-Six (86) official land borders and Fourteen (14) Seaport Border Control Post in Nigeria, strengthening the existing systems within these border points is key in view of the present global security challenges. Currently, Nigeria has Six (6) Land Border Control Posts, two (2) Seaports Border Control Posts, three (3) State Commands and the NIS headquarters where MIDAS is fully operational. This makes a total of twelve (12) MIDAS sites.
As Installation of MIDAS is being expanded to more Nigerian Borders through many projects, it became imperative to build the capacity of NIS personnel on MIDAS use and installation. The selection of participants was done by NIS with support from a vibrant MIDAS Working Group (MWG). The MWG is saddled with the responsibility of providing technical support and oversight on the MIDAS process to the IT UNIT and personnel of NIS. The Group is made up of members from Land, Sea and Air Control Border Posts and representatives of the NIS Headquarters.
For a sustainable capacity building process, IOM supported NIS by equipping the NIS Training Room with IT facilities that have the capacity to house 15 participants at a time. To scale up the number of Border Control Posts implementing MIDAS, sixty-four personnel drawn from various Border Control Posts, State Commands and NIS Headquarters in four (4) sessions have been trained on MIDAS use and installation in the second quarter of 2018. These trainings were aimed at building the capacity of participants on MIDAS Installation and use to enable NIS personnel to operate the BCPs effectively and efficiently.
The trainings have led to improved institutional and technical capacity of the Nigeria Immigration Service on the operationalization of MIDAS because of the increased capacity of NIS personnel to deplore MIDAS at both State Commands and BCPs. Meanwhile, beneficiaries of the training have continued to applaud the MIDAS, acknowledging that it has enhanced their productivity and professionalism across every facet of their work, urging that IOM should continue to support NIS in this regard.
Other donors have continued to express interest in expanding MIDAS to more borders in Nigeria because of the successes recorded by the project. The Government of Japan committed to fund borders with solar powered MIDAS under the Countering Terrorism Enhancing Land Border Control in Nigeria Project.
As part of efforts to further scale up the MIDAS coverage, six additional sites have also been assessed for MIDAS deployment. These sites include: Gada and Sabon Birni BCP in Sokoto State, Kaingiwa BCP in Kebbi State, Gurbin Baure BCP in Zamfara State, Maiadua and Zangon Daura BCP in Katsina State respectively.
With the high level of existing collaboration and synergy between NIS and IOM, both organizations will continue to leverage the existing structures within the NIS to ensure that more resources are mobilised for further scale up of the MIDAS process in NIS for improved Border Management System.
Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) is a Border Management Information System (BMIS) developed by IOM in 2009. It is a user-friendly and fully customizable solution for States in need of a cost-effective and comprehensive border management information system. It allows for the collecting, processing, storing, and analysing traveller information in real time and across an entire border network. The system has been designed to be compliant with international standards and it is currently operational in 19 countries. For effective implementation, IOM provides expert guidance throughout the installation process, including the delivery of system administration training workshop and ensure that governments have full and exclusive ownership of any data recorded by MIDAS.