The Instinct Resource Services (IRS) Limited has trained 200 officers of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) across the country on mental health awareness.

The training, which ended in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, with a theme, Building Mental Health Awareness, Emotional Intelligence and Effect of Psychoactive Substance for Superlative Productivity, 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, IRS, Mr. Ayuba Fagbemi, in a statement on Monday 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, 450million people suffered a 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


He said: “The Nigerian Immigration Service and its current leadership under the Comptroller-General, Idris Isa 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 on body systems and understanding how to promote mental wellbeing in the workplace.

In his remarks, the state Comptroller of Immigration (CIS), AJ. 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 average of 50million people suffered mental illnesses and attributed cases of suicide, murder, anger, depression and drug abuse to such conditions.

He said: “We all as officers and men of Nigerian Immigration Service have been entrusted with the responsibility of guarding our great nation at every entry and exit points, communicating and handling people from all parts of the world.

“It is important to note that it takes a mentally sound and stable personnel to be able to carry out our statutory duties as the gatekeepers of the country. It is for this reason that the service has deemed it necessary to train officers on how to take care of their mental health and remain productive in their daily activities”.

He said the capacity-building programme would aid officers and men of NIS to improve on their interpersonal relationship, level of self-awareness, self-motivation and emotional disposition.

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