The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has discovered an illegal office in Idumagbo, Lagos, where some of its officials register foreigners for N60,000.
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Two officials and five civilians have been arrested in connection with the illicit trade. Vanguard reports that the officials sometimes visit offices owned by foreigners and pretend to have been sent by the Immigration at Alagbon to register members of staff.
They were said to have charged N60,000 per head while they failed to remit the money to government coffers.
Following complaints of irregularities in the documentation of some of these foreigners, among who are Lebanese, Chinese and Indians, the NIS reportedly carried out raids in some areas in the state, where the illegal registration office was located.
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“It is so sad to discover that our own men are involved in the sabotaged registration of foreigners. One of our officials and three of his civilian accomplices were first arrested in Idumagbo area of Lagos Island. Another official was arrested with two others last week. When they visit these companies, they would tell them that they were from the Headquarters and that they came to do them a favour by coming to register them, considering how they (foreigners) were. The companies will be happy to entertain them and pay as from N60,000 for each of their staff.
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“They opened a secret office at Idumagbo, where foreigners from Niger, Togo, Chad, Cameroon, were registered. Some files containing so many incriminating documents were recovered in the process. This is too bad because the suspects are sabotaging the government, deceiving foreigners and extorting them, thereby giving us bad names,” a source told Vanguard.