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Citizens to get electronic passports,says Aronda

KAMPALA. The Internal Affairs minister, Gen Aronda Nyakairima, has said government will have a vote in the next budget to facilitate the issuance of electronic passports as required by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

Gen Nyakairima said although the process of issuing the national identity cards has moved at a snail pace, issuing electronic passports will be fast-tracked to save Ugandan travellers from getting hurdles at international airports.Gen Nyakairima made the remarks while meeting Muslim leaders at Kibuli Mosque as part of his countrywide mobilisation tour for the ID registration scheduled for next month.

Stalled national ID projectSeveral attempts to give Ugandans national IDs have stalled, with the government in March 2010 controversially procuring Muhlbauer Technology, a German firm, at 64.2m Euros (about Shs230.9b) to supply necessary technology and other related services for the project, only to print 400 IDs. President Museveni, premier Amama Mbabazi and a few MPs were the beneficiaries.

Electronic passportsSeveral countries across the globe have met the international passport guidelines set by the ICAO that requires issuance of passports that uses machine readable passports (MRP) by November 24, 2015.The government targets 18 million Ugandans in the first phase of the project.

SOURCE: DAILY MONITOR

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