Uganda Members of Parliament have asked government to put in place a detailed plan of phasing out the ordinary passports.
During the 17th Ordinary Summit of the East African Community (EAC) Heads of State held in March 2016, the Presidents launched the new EAC e-Passport and directed that issuance of the passports should take effective 1st January 2017 followed by a phased suspension of the readable East African and National Passports in a period of two years.
Doreen Amule Ruth, the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Defense in her report to the house recommended that Government should come out with a detailed transitional plan to phase out the regular machine-readable passport for the e-passport.
Amule says several Ugandans acquired new regular passports, and yet they have paid money ranging from 100,000 to 400,000 shillings and yet now the proposal means these passports have to be dealt away with.
She says that the new passports should not come to hurt the people, but should actually enhance service delivery. She says there have been numerous complaints on the new passports, how to phase out the old passports and how Government can reconcile all these.
Amule said the committee hopes a strategy will save people from frustrations.
Meanwhile, Parliament has also approved an additional 67 billion shillings for the purchase of 300,000 blank e-passport booklets.
Government has already signed a contract to provide a Turnkey solution for an e-Passport System/infrastructure, supply of blank e-Passport booklets and construction of a fully furnished Personalization Centre at the Internal Affairs Ministry Headquarters.
According to Internal Affairs Minister Mario Obiga Kania, up to 1,000 passport are issued daily by immigration.