The Ministry of Interior have described the recently launched e-citizen platform for application and execution of projects as a prompt response to the Presidential Order of 2017, aimed at promoting ease of doing business in Nigeria and economic development.

Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari had in a bid to promote transparency and efficiency in the country’s business environment issued the order to boost foreign investment.

Speaking at the official commissioning of the platform called “e-Citibiz Automation Call Centre” in Abuja, the minister of Interior, Lieutenant General Abdulrahman Dambazau (rtd) said, “It is part of the ministry’s contribution in line with presidential directive geared towards encouraging individuals and companies to invest with ease and thus, reduce direct contact between service providers and the staff.

Dambazau who expressed optimism that the use of the automation call centre boost timely delivery of goods said, was impressed that the project had been completed.

The minister said, “The facility is to reduce interface between the staff of the ministry and citizens as well as companies from the point of payment, application and service delivery. The handlers of the project are on standby in the case of breakdown of any facility to ensure sustainability.”

Dambazau also warned companies who violate the expatriate quota policy while bringing in foreigners into the country to desist, as there are now sanctions in place to punish defaulters.

“We have noted that some foreign companies don’t respect this expatriate quota policy and also some of our rules and regulations that are not followed.

Therefore, we have designed sanctions for companies that apply for expatriate quota and misuse them. Also, with the automation, we have advertised for them to reregister so we can have comprehensive details and monitor them well,” he added.

Also speaking, the CEO of Anchor Dataware, Joel Adi, said the portal will be functional for online application, payment and confirmation status.

He said, “Individuals applying for marriage and citizenship as well as companies that are bringing expatriates into the country can also apply online and they get their approval at their own comfort, saving them the stress of coming to the ministry.”

LEADERSHIP recalls that even before the federal government signed the much talked about executive order which among other things, aimed to ensure ease of doing business in Nigeria, the Ministry of Interior has been in the forefront of strengthening ease of doing business through its plethora of initiatives.