The New Times (Kigali)

14 February 2013

Rwanda: Government to Issue Official Documents Online - Minister

At least 100 official documents such as marriage certificates could soon be accessed online, the Minister of Youth and ICT, Jean Philbert Nsengimana, has said.

Nsengimana was, yesterday, speaking while touring the Directorate of Immigration and Emigration to see technologies used to deliver faster services to the people.

"Over 100 documents could be delivered without people travelling from their homes to the leaders' offices. We are considering which documents we can start with, at least five of the documents will be soon delivered through ICT," said Nsengimana.

The minister said efforts to help all Rwandans get ICT skills are underway through tel-centers spread across the country.

The plan is to set up a tele-centre in all sectors countrywide.

The minister said information which can help Rwandans using ICT will be translated in Kinyarwanda to solve language barrier.

He added that as efforts to increase Internet access continue, those whose phones enable access should be able to get information online from various institutions.

"Immigration has advanced in terms of using ICT and it has changed its service delivery. What we need is to help people get documents through [online] application," he said.

Immigration officials said ICT has eased their work in terms of time and the number of people served.

Passports are issued within three days, while the laissez passer (temporary travel document) is given within 40 minutes.

Thomas Gahundi, 75, who has been using migration offices since 1999, said service delivery has changed over the years.

"I used to come for my documents and it required days of appointments to get passport. It required between two weeks and a month, but today things have changed. I came here on Monday they told me to come today and I hope I am getting it," he said.

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