Press Release —Local July 01, 2021

IOM-NIS strategic meeting aims for international standards for migration management

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Lagos – In just five years Nigeria, with support from the International Organization for Migration (IOM), developed the largest and most complex Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) architecture in the world. All five international airports in Nigeria, 29% of the Seaports and 16% of the land borders and 7 State commands have been covered with MIDAS.   

Improving further the ICT and data management system to reach for higher international standards, is the aim of a high-level meeting taking place in Lagos on 1-3 July 2021, bringing together Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and IOM senior officials.  

“MIDAS revolutionized the Country’s border management operations which strengthened NIS’s digital data collection and storage capacity,” said Franz Celestin, IOM Nigeria Chief of Mission. “A fully functional border management system requires an integrated and complementary approach to operational, technical, and legal capacities of the relevant MDAs,” he added. 

The MIDAS system enables immigration and border officials to process travellers more rapidly and professionally, making their border-crossing experience safer and more humane. It also enables States to more effectively monitor those entering and exiting their territory by land, air and sea while providing a sound statistical basis for migration policy-related planning. Nigeria’s five airports have online real-time connectivity with INTERPOL i24/7 and are supported with over 130 computers and migrant processing equipment.   

The strategic meeting between IOM and NIS aims to set new objectives and concrete actions to improve the border management processing. The Honourable Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, will attend the meeting on Friday, 2 July 2021. 

“As a country with expansive and extensive borderlines, we must be courageous enough to sincerely interrogate our country security and migration management cover with a view to discovering our strengths, weaknesses and areas of urgent interventions,” said Mohamed Babandede, Comptroller General Immigration Services. 

IOM and NIS have strengthened their cooperation through joint projects and initiatives. IOM supported the pilot roll out of electronic and biometric registration of foreign nationals in Nigeria, an initiative which was taken over by NIS and was expanded to all 36 States.  

Last month, IOM donated safety gears to NIS State Commands in Sokoto, Zamfara and Jigawa in preparation for the commencement of the use of mobile MIDAS for border patrolling. To date, training facilities for immigration officers have been established in seven States (Anambra, Cross Rivers, Edo, Kano, Kebbi and Ogun States) and the Service headquarters with weekly trainings being held at these sites along with MIDAS learning. From 2016 until today, over 2,500 officers have been trained in the same locations.  

During the COVID-19 pandemic, IOM worked with NIS and PHS to help prevent and control the spread of the virus. IOM provided at the Points of Entry (PoE) the required prevention and control facilities, including thermal scanners, construction of solar-powered boreholes and isolation centres. 

The MIDAS architecture implementation in Nigeria since its commencement has been funded by The Government of Germany, the Kingdom of Netherlands, the Government of Switzerland, The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK), Denmark, Canada, Japan, European Union, and Norway. 

For more information, please contact Stylia Kampani at IOM Nigeria, Tel: +234 906 273 9168, Email: [email protected]

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