For a claim of being a Nigerian citizen to hold water, there has to be a document that ties such individual to a local government (indigenous area) within the country

The Nigeria Immigration Services (NIS) has explained its latest policy requiring proof of citizenship from Nigerians seeking to renew their passports.

According to a post on X, the NIS stated that all documents required during the process of passport issuance are backed by the Nigerian constitution and the Ministry of Interior.

The immigration service explained further that “for your claim of being a Nigerian citizen to hold water, there has to be a document that ties you to a local government (indigenous area) within the country.”

On Wednesday, an X user, Tayo Oviosu, reportedly raised concern over the policy requiring the provision of letter of identification from the local government by applicants renewing their passport.


He also questioned why Nigerians who live outside their state of origin have to embark on an unnecessary journey just for a document.

In response to Mr Oviosu’s post, the NIS clarified that most states have liaison offices, thus canceling the need for travel.

“First, you DO NOT necessarily NEED to go to your state of origin to get the indigeneship document

“We are aware that most states have liaison offices in other states. For example, Anambra State has liaison offices in Lagos (Eti-Osa) and Abuja (Asokoro).

“These offices are empowered to issue such documents,” the Service stated.

In recent months, the NIS has undergone reforms.

In January 2024, the Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, launched the International Passport Automation system.

According to the minister, the International Passport Automation system will help strengthen Nigeria’s security architecture.

In the new regime, part of the requirements for renewal of passports include provision of a National Identification Number, old passport number as well as supporting documents such as birth certificate, and local government certificate of indigeneship.

But many Nigerians like Adeniyi Paraiso feel the new requirements for passport renewal are unnecessary.

In April, Mr Paraiso visited the Immigration office to renew his passport but was surprised that the process had changed.

“They have all my information so why do I have to provide all these documents as if I’m applying for a new passport,” he queried.