Ministry of Interior has revealed on Thursday, that at least 159 Nigerians renounced their citizenship in 2022 alone.

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Shuaib Belgore, disclosed this at the 64th session of the State House Ministerial briefing organised by the Presidential Communications Team at the Aso Rock Villa, Abuja.

He noted that this included 150 Nigerians who renounced their citizenship between 2006 to 2021 and 159 who did so in 2022.

According to Belgore, Now down to those Nigerians who renounced their citizenship, so far the Ministry had registered a total of 309. Between 2006 and 2021, 150 Nigerians renounced their citizenship.

In 2022 alone, around 159 Nigerians renounced their citizenship.

The Permanent Secretary revealed that the ministry is processing 350 applications for naturalisation from foreign nationals who want to be Nigerians.

He explained that In November last year, the ministry had a total number of 286 new Nigerians, out of which 208 were by naturalisation while 78 were by registration, meaning spouses of Nigerian citizens who now have become Nigerians.

He maintained that However, going further, the Advisory Committee on Nigerian citizenship would sit on February 7 to consider another 350 applications for naturalisation, after which the successful applications will be sent to Mr. President in Council for approval.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Immigration Service processed and issued at least 9.31 million passports from 2015 to 2022.

Speaking at the State House Ministerial briefing on Thursday, the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, revealed that in 2015, 2016 and 2017, the service processed and issued 941,995, 1,035,668 and 1,136,855 passports, respectively.

In 2018, 2019 and 2020, it processed 1,242,953 and 780,047 passports, respectively. While 1,056,422 and 1,899,683 passports were processed and issued in 2021 and 2022, respectively.

Aregbesola attributed the high passport demand to the massive exodus of Nigerians out of the county in search of greener pastures.

He said in 2022, the Immigration Service issued the highest number of passport booklets totaling 1,899,683 over seven years.

Bello Wakili