Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede has revealed the reason why a passport that should take three months to be released is taking up to six months. In an interview with The Herald, Mudede said the reason for the delays was due to foreign currency.
The current challenge in the delay of ordinary passports issuance is attributed to the unavailability of foreign currency. This has resulted in the delays in getting the needed consumables from the foreign suppliers, since these consumables cannot be sourced locally. If foreign currency is availed in time and we are able to get consumables particularly the secured-passport paper, the department will be in a position to address the delays. Regarding the issuance of passports, the department operates a typical industrial production process involving the use of foreign consumables. Where all the consumables are availed, the department is able to produce passports within reasonable shorter times.
Mudede said passports in other categories were coming out within the prescribed period. These include those released within 24 hours, three working days, diplomatic and service passports. He said that he will also approach the Civil Service Commission (CSC) for authority to work outside normal working hours to clear the current backlog.