Ambassadorial nominee, Commodore Yusuf Jonga Hinna (Rtd.) from Gombe State yesterday raised alarm that Ghanaians and citizens from other African countries have obtained Nigeria passports with the intention of perpetrating criminal offences.
Commodore Hinna’s name was forwarded to the Senate for screening by President Muhammadu Buhari.
This was just as he said Iraq and Syria are the world’s most dangerous countries in view of their role in the spread of global terrorism.
The nominee, during his screening by the Senate committee on Foreign Affairs on Tuesday, told lawmakers that some of the criminal offences perpetrated in several countries of the world are by nationals of other African countries who are holders of the Nigerian passports, and not by Nigerian citizens as reported.
Hinna, who put in 34 years of service in the military, while fielding questions from members of the committee, said if he is receives his posting, he would embark on continual screening to determine citizenship and eligibility for obtaining the Nigeria passport.
Responding to concerns raised by Senator Gbenga Ashafa (APC, Lagos East), on how he hopes to confront the issue of xenophobic attacks if posted to South Africa, the nominee said he would engage the country’s government so as to stop the harassment of Nigerians living in the country.
“There are dislikes against Nigerians in South Africa. When Nigerians arrives, police dogs are used to sniff them at the airport.
“If I am sent to such a country, I will engage the government o as to stop unwanted harassment.”
“However, I recall that Some Africans such as Ghanaians were arrested and they were carrying Nigeria passports.
“There is abuse off our green passports. There are security challenges, and we have to tackle them”, the nominee added.
Responding to a question by Senator Jame Manager (PDP, Delta South), as to what country poses severe threat to world peace, Hinna, while drawing the attention to North Korea and it’s recent tests of Nuclear missiles, explained that “nuclear weapons are dangerous to world affairs, however, because Africa is not a target, does not mean we should do away with it.”
He explained further that Syria and Iraq, are potential threats to global security.
According to him, “the spillover of what is happening in Syria is such that there are people in our country (Nigeria), such as the Shia movement that share the same ideology.”
He cautioned that should the federal government fail to curtail the activities off the group, the country may be faced any another security threat greater than that posed by the insurgent Boko Haram group.