THE Federal Government has expressed the need for Nigeria and The Gambia to strengthen their relationship towards ensuring internal security and citizenship integrity.
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, Georgina Ehuriah, who spoke in Abuja, said this could be done through deployment of modern technology in the management of borders.
She spoke when the Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Muhammad Babandede, led a delegation from the Gambian Ministry of Interior to the ministry. They are in the country on a study tour of the Nigeria Immigration Service.
Ehuriah commended the Gambian Government for granting women the opportunity to serve in the strategic positions of their public service.
According to her, the number of women in the team of those on study tour to the Nigeria Immigration Service is a clear indication of the commitment of the government of Gambia to the promotion of gender equality.
The permanent secretary noted that Nigeria and The Gambia share almost the same commitment in the promotion of gender equality and in their public service structure, particularly their Ministry of Interior’s mandate which she said is to ensure internal security and citizenship integrity.
She said further that the Muhammadu Buhari administration was fully committed to ensuring internal security and citizenship integrity of Nigerians and as such, it would continue to collaborate with any country towards achieving the mandate particularly in the area of capacity building.
She called on The Gambian Immigration Department (GID) to make the best use of the opportunity granted them by their Nigerian Immigration counterparts during their study tour so as to improve their internal security and contribute meaningfully in the fight against terrorism and transnational crimes and criminality.
Ehuriah expressed optimism that GID would achieve a lot from their Nigerian Immigration counterparts at the end of their study tour and assured therm that the service would continue to collaborate with The Gambia in the area of capacity building, e-border management and the fight against all forms of crimes and criminality.
She noted that this would not only ensure internal security in the country, but promote Foreign Direct Investment in line with the policy thrust of the Buhari administration.
She stated further that the Nigeria Immigration Service is a flagship agency of the Federal Government which had made the nation proud, saying the Federal Government has achieved so much through the effort of the Service.
The permanent secretary, who also commended the International Organization on Migration (IOM) for its partnership with the ministry that had led to the birth of the Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS), a means of ensuring cost-effective and comprehensive border management information system in Nigeria, noted that it has helped the nation to build capacity.
“The impact of the extension of your services to other African countries will greatly enhance their performance too”, she added.
The leader of The Gambian delegation and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, Moussier Assan Tangara, described the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) as a model service in the continent.
He said that The Gambian Immigration Department (GID) was going through a reform process hence it came to Nigeria to share common interest and to understudy the successful reforms embarked upon by the country’s NIS.