The other day, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Al Hajji Abubaker Odongo Jeje, introduced the e-passports with fanfare in his office. He invited the citizens who wanted to change over to these documents to do so. The passports are supposed to be East Africa compliant.
Almost immediately, some people in the know started to find fault with these documents. It appears that the Government had not properly consulted with the other countries in the region before they launched the documents. Also, the high-tech features appeared to be faulty. Moreover, the price tag of these passports is double the old manual ones.
You can see why Jeje was rushing to get the documents from out of his drawers – money. We wonder whether it will even get to the Treasury. What seems obvious is that Jeje must go back to the drawing board and prepare for a proper introduction of the passports to the public. As usual, we have no way of refusing to pay out the price tag, especially when he withdraws the usage of the old ones, in a blackmailing move, anyway.
One suggestion: since Jeje has particulars of the people with the old passports, all he has to do is to make the new passports in the names of the old ones; and then he invites the owners to go get them. He can use any manner of administrative action for this. He can even use a phase-off system.
All we are saying is that as we have little options; let him do this properly, instead of bumbling around.
John Patrick Omedia, Banda, Kampala