Posted by News Express | 12 May 2014 | 5,496 times
The Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) has dismissed claims by music star Davido (real name David Adeleke) that he was stopped from travelling to the United States of America on Thursday (May 8) because he refused to bribe NIS personnel on duty at the Murtala Muhammad International Airport (MMIA), Lagos.
NIS Public Relations Officer, Mr. Chukwuemeka Obua, said in a statement issued yesterday in Abuja that Davido failed to produce his Nigerian passport on request but rather presented a US passport with number 460918874 issued by the US State of Georgia on December 14, 2009 and valid till December 13, 2019.
He said NIS officers on duty explained to Davido that the passport had no Nigerian visa on it with which he would have been admitted into Nigeria, meaning that he could not travel with the said American passport.
Obua regretted that instead to go and bring the Nigerian passport, which he claimed to have forgotten at home, he “started arguing with the officer who had to refer the case to his superiors. The verdict here too was that he cannot make the trip unless he produces the said Nigerian passport.”
The NIS spokesman said that “livid with anger, Adeleke, in the company of his bodyguards, started protesting in a disorderly manner prompting the Comptroller of Immigration in charge at MMIA to intervene.
“He (NIS Comptroller) advised Mr. Adeleke to call his bodyguards to order and comply with the lawful instruction which would not only erase any doubt as to his immigration status but also establish his claim to dual citizenship.
“Mr. Adeleke left and on the following day, being Friday, May 9, 2014, produced his Nigerian passport with number A02227477 issued in Abuja on August 13, 2010 and valid till August 12, 2015. This passport was endorsed/stamped and he then proceeded on his trip.”
Obua condemned Davido for lying about the incident and posting a damaging and defamatory message on Instagram alleging that NIS officers at MMIA had prevented him from travelling because he refused to bribe them.
“This behaviour by the young musician is quite unfortunate,” he said. “One would ordinarily have expected some form of commendation from him for the professional manner the officers who attended to him conducted themselves, especially by saving him from imminent embarrassment at some international port of entry by ensuring that his passport was endorsed as is the law and practice in Nigeria.”
Continuing, the NIS spokesman said that the Comptroller General (CG) of Immigration “wishes to use this medium to appeal to Nigerians to be patient and cooperate with officers at their duty posts so as to be of better service to them.
“The CG will also advise Nigerians not to encourage or indulge any NIS staff but to report promptly any officer who by words or deeds seeks gratification before performing his/her lawful duty.”
•Photo shows Davido.
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