2023 Review: Tunji-Ojo’s feats as interior minister


In the labyrinth of Nigeria’s political landscape, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo has emerged as a beacon of transformative leadership within the President Bola Tinubu administration. Since assuming the role of Minister of Interior, Tunji-Ojo has orchestrated a symphony of unprecedented reforms, deftly steering various agencies under his purview towards a brighter horizon.

An accomplished business magnate and consultant with a robust background in ICT, Tunji-Ojo’s multifaceted expertise has illuminated the corridors of the Ministry of Interior. His stewardship encapsulates a tapestry of achievements across various sectors, marked by a resolute commitment to enhancing efficiency, professionalism, and progressive change.

One of his hallmark triumphs was the commendable feat at the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), where he orchestrated the clearance of an overwhelming backlog of 204,332 passports within a record-breaking three-week period, rescuing the nation from the grips of a dire national crisis.

Beyond this, Tunji-Ojo’s visionary directives have heralded a new era of efficiency and service delivery. He pledged to revolutionize passport processing, promising a two-week timeline and the introduction of home and office delivery of passports, commencing in February 2024. His initiative to implement personal uploads of passport photographs further streamlines the application process, fostering convenience and accessibility.

Tunji-Ojo’s proactive stance on international relations demonstrated his commitment to reciprocity in visa processes, challenging inequitable privileges granted to foreign nationals while championing the rights of Nigerian applicants.

The minister’s Midas touch extended to the welfare of paramilitary officers. He advocated for equitable compensation and initiated plans for a functional pension board, boosting morale and productivity within the ranks. His efforts signify a pivotal step towards aligning paramilitary salaries with those of the Nigeria Police Force, ensuring fairness and equity.

Furthermore, Tunji-Ojo’s resolve to decongest correctional facilities through the clearance of fines and compensations worth N585 million for 4,068 inmates showcased his compassionate approach to criminal justice reform. His dedication to transforming correctional homes into centers of rehabilitation signifies a paradigm shift from punitive measures to holistic rehabilitation, fostering hope and redemption.

In recognition of his sterling performances, he was awarded the Public Service Person Of The Year 2023 by Leadership Newspaper.

According to the Leadership Newspaper, he was found worthy for finding his way into the hearts of millions of citizens for whom obtaining or renewing the Nigerian passport had become a nightmare; for his bold, extensive and exceptional reforms tackling the perennial passport booklet debacle  at the Nigeria Immigration Service, in less than five weeks  into his assumption of office, a stride which earned him the sobriquet “Minister Talk And Do”, Dr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo is Public Servant of the Year 2023. 

In tandem with these accomplishments, Tunji-Ojo’s engagement with agencies, stakeholders, and international partners underscores his commitment to tackling illegal migration and organized crime, ensuring a safer and more secure nation.

As the year draws to a close, Tunji-Ojo’s tenure as Minister of Interior stands as a testament to his unwavering dedication and transformative leadership. His accomplishments in a relatively short span resonate as a prelude to greater strides in the coming year. 

With his sterling performances thus far, Tunji-Ojo is poised to elevate the Ministry of Interior to greater heights, fortifying the nation’s security and amplifying its role in shaping a brighter future for Nigeria.

Femi Salako,

Media consultant to the minister of interior