The Ministry of Internal Affairs has announced that it will open a new passport centre in Beijing, China in May as one of the ways to ease issuance and renewal of passports for Ugandans in that part of the world.
The ministry spokesperson, Simon Mundeyi said the new passport centre will officially be opened on May, 2.
“The new passport centre in Beijing will serve Ugandans living and working in that city as well as the entire China and those in nearby Hongkong,” Mundeyi said.
With increased ties between Kampala and Beinjing, many Ugandans are either live, work or study in Chinese universities and cities.
Many others have businesses in the Asian country and the new passport centre in the capital Beijing will help serve them in terms of renewing and applying for new passports.
The passport centre in Beijing will be the seventh after others already opened in Washington, London, Pretoria, Abu Dhabi, Ottawa and Copenhagen.
Over 30000 passports uncollected
The development comes at a time when over 30,000 new passports remain uncollected at the passport centre at Kyambogo in Kampala.
According to the Internal Affairs spokesperson, Simon Mundeyi, between 20,000 and 30,000 newly printed passports have remained uncollected by owners in the past two or so years.
“ These people processed these passports, applied, paid for them, lined up at our offices , we went ahead to process the passports, made them available and are now not being picked. We don’t understand why,”Mundeyi said.
“You know a stockpile of passports generally slows down the system as storage space for new passports is reduced leading to delays in issuing of newly printed passports. We want people to collect the new passports so as to get space to keep the newly printed ones.”
Currently, the Ministry of Internal Affairs processes and prints 3000 copies of passports per day.