Ministry receives new batch of green passports – Passport now valid for 10 years
The Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration announced this week that it received a batch of new passports following months of critical shortages.
The Deputy Minister of Home Affairs and Immigration, Maureen Hinda-Mbuende at a media brief in Windhoek said the validity of the new passports will be for a ten year period.
“This will lessen the demands for new passports. However, the validity of passports for applicants under 21 will remain five years because of changes in facial features at that age,” she said.
According to her, the ministry has put measures in place to ensure that running out of passports will be something of the past.
“During the last few months, we had to resort to contingency plans to keep emergency stocks. A total of 6,065 were printed, of which 2,064 ordinary passports and 4,001 brown passports,” she added.
The ministry intends to clear the pending applications within 4 to 6 weeks as additional resources have been deployed, she added.
“The system that we have put in place will ensure that the people who need passports to travel will get them on time. We envisage reverting to the initial turnaround time of 3 to 10 working days by mid-December,” she said.
Meanwhile, Hinda-Mbuende said demands for passports have been inflated by people who apply for passports without the intention of traveling.
During the period of shortage 160 passports remained uncollected, in addition to over 5,000 that expired on our shelves, without having been collected, she added.