14 February 2013

Rwanda: Nsengimana Commends Migration for Use of ICT

Youth and ICT Minister Jean Philbert Nsengimana has lauded the way in which the Immigration and Emigration office uses ICT to foster service delivery.

According to the minister, issuance of all documents including passports, laissez-passer and visas has significantly improved thanks to the use of ICT. "The progress is good, though there is still a lot to do," the Minister said on Thursday after visiting the migration services.

The minister noted that a Rwandan from Ngororero in Western Province can get his laissez-passer just by presenting his identity card at his district. "There is a system that decodes and sends all information containing the ID card to the main office," explained the minister. "With the technology, it's no longer necessary for someone to leave Ngororero or Muhanga since he can get the service from his home."

He also noted that all processes have been made automatic and that it requires only 40 minutes for an individual to get his laissez-passer document.

The improvement is also noticed by people who apply for travel documents. "Ten years ago we could wait for two weeks, without getting a passport, but we get it now after three days," said Thomas Gahundi, a resident of Rusororo in Gasabo.

Though the migration services have made great strides in the use of technology, Nsengimana said the next step would be to think about introducing a self-service system where anyone who has access to internet can get all the services from his home.

The Minister pointed out that there are more than 100 documents that Rwandans can apply for without having to go to a ministry or public office in Kigali, such as birth and marriage certificates which can be obtained at the sector level.

Minister Nsengimana also visited the migration office at Kigali international airport to see how ICT is improving service delivery.

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