Addressing a Press conference yesterday Registrar-General Clemence Masango said a number of passports have been left uncollected.
The number of uncollected passports applied on normal basis are 50 733 while those applied for on an urgent basis are 11 144 which have since expired. Said Masango:
This means that out of these 11 144 uncollected passports that have since expired, applicants collectively lost not less than $590 632 in fees. Government obviously lost much more since what is charged as fees is not necessarily the actual cost of producing the passport. We therefore, encourage all those who applied for passports prior to May 2018 and have not yet collected them, to visit the office of issue and collect their passports. The public in general and particularly all our clients need to know that passport consumables, that is, paper, ink, glue, ribbon and film are all imported at very high cost, all in foreign currency.
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He said his office has a backlog of 166 240 applications dating back to May 2018. Masango said the department on average receives 2 100 new applications for passports daily and it had come up with an implementation plan to clear the backlog once Government avails resources.