20 November 2012

Zimbabwe: 'Rural Population Discriminated Against'

Co-Home Affairs Minister Cde Kembo Mohadi has expressed concern that the new online passport application process is failing to cater for the rural population.

The Registrar General's office recently digitalised the passport application process. In an interview over the weekend Cde Mohadi said: "While the digitalisation process is noble, the majority of people in rural areas cannot do so as there are no internet facilities. Some in urban set ups are still struggling with the new process," he said.

Cde Mohadi said the online passport application facility was aimed at alleviating the challenges faced in passport production.

The new passport application regime, he said, was expected to improve efficiency and reduce time spent queuing for the forms.

The applicants can now download the application forms online and take them to the passport office after filling them in. They would pay a US$3 fee on submission.

The website, http://www.rg.gov.zw also enables one to find relevant information about the activities and services provided by the department as well as addresses of all their offices around Zimbabwe.

As a security measure the passport form can only be printed after it has been filled and cannot be saved to any computer. Those without access to the internet get the forms from the RG's Office.

An ordinary passport costs US$50 and takes a month to be process, while an emergency passport, which takes three days, costs US$250. Applications are only processed at provincial offices and the main passport office at Makombe complex in Harare.

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