In an effort to provide reformed immigration services, the Malawi Immigration Department will roll out the Passport Issuance registration process system in six sites as a pilot phase in Mangoch, Salima, Mzimba, Mzuzu, Lilongwe and Blantyre.
The system will be rolled out in collaboration with the Malawi Posts Cooperation with support from the Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra).
This, according to Chief Immigration Officer, Masauko Medi, is in line with Public Reforms being championed by State Vice President Saulos Chilima.
The Department also launched SMS Passport Enquiry Service through which passport applicants can enquire progress of their passport applications by sending the barcode number to 343 for Airtel subscribers at the moment.
“It is also worth noting that the process aimed at computerizing the Permit Issuance System has commenced. Meanwhile, procurement of consultancy services for a review of the permit issuance procedures is underway with support from the World Bank.
“It is expected that the project will streamline permit application and issuance processes thereby creating an enabling environment for investment and socio-economic development,” said Medi.
He also said they are finalizing the development of an electronic Visa Issuance System (E-visa) which, accoridng to him, will allow application of visas online from anywhere across the globe.
“Furthermore, the rolling out of Integrated Border Control System project which is aimed at automating all Immigration Border Posts is on course. The initial processes in readiness for computerization of Mwanza Immigration Border Post are currently underway whilst Kamuzu and Chileka International Airports were already automated,” said Medi.
He said the Department is committed to providing efficient and effective services to the public.
The most recent reform realized at the Department is decentralization of passport printing to Lilongwe and Mzuzu regional offices which has seen decongestion of Blantyre office, which was the sole printing office.