Immigration Officers Trained on Mental Health in Rivers

Blessing Ibunge in Port Harcourt

Over 200 officers of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) across the country have been trained on mental health awareness, which was facilitated by Instinct Resource Services (IRS) Limited in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

The training was part of efforts of the NIS Comptroller-General, Mr. Idris Isah Jere, to enhance the productivity of officers and men of the service.

The Managing Director of IRS, Mr. Ayuba Fagbemi, in a statement issued yesterday, lamented that despite being an integral part of wellbeing, mental health was being neglected in the country.

Quoting statistics from the World Health Organisation (WHO), Fagbemi said worldwide, 450 million people suffer from mental disorder and 25 per cent of the population would have mental illness at sometimes in their lives.

He said research had also shown that emotional intelligence accounted for nearly 90 per cent of what set high performers apart from others, and warned against the negative effects of psychoactive drugs

Fagbemi said: “The Nigerian Immigration Service and its current leadership under the Comptroller-General, Jere,  is strategically positioned, and has invested in equipping its personnel with the right skills and motivating the personnel towards ensuring superlative performance.”

He said the training equipped the officers with emotional intelligence skills in the workplace for teamwork building; how to identify symptoms of mental disorder; knowing the harmful effects of psychoactive drugs in a body system, and understanding how to promote mental wellbeing in the workplace.

In his remarks, the state Comptroller of Immigration (CIS), A J. Kwasau, said the training was initiated to enable officers know how to take care of their mental health and remain productive in discharging their daily activities.

Quoting the National Bureau of Statistics, Kwasau, said an average of 50 million people suffer from mental illnesses, and attributed cases of suicide, murder, anger, depression and drug abuse to such conditions.

The theme of the training was: ‘Building Mental Health Awareness, Emotional Intelligence and Effect of Psychoactive Substance for Superlative Productivity’.

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