Passport prices have shot up with immediate effect, it has emerged.
In an unconfirmed audio that is circulating on the social media, an official from the Registrar General’s office tells passport seekers gathered at the RG’s office that passports prices have shot up.
Citizens queuing for the passports, however, protest the announcement.
The development comes barely a month after the RG’s office revealed that the department was engaging government over the possibility of increasing passport fees.
Speaking during a tour of the Central Registry by Home Affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe recently, Registrar-General Clemence Masango said his department was talking to government to increase fees for ordinary passports to the equivalent of US$53 on the interbank rate, which could see application fees for an ordinary passport costing $901.
“US$53 is what was approved and that is what can easily enable us to provide a service, bearing in mind that not every applicant paid US$53. We have seen people who require their passport in three days and they paid US$253 at that time; and those who want it within 24 hours US$318.
So these two will help meet us halfway and achieve a win-win with those paying US$53. So if we are to get a review, we must get a review of not less than US$53 equivalent at the prevailing bank rate,” he said.
At the prevailing bank rate of around US$1 to $17, an ordinary passport will cost $901, while a three-day passport will cost $4 301 and an emergency 24-hour passport will ask for $5 406.
According to Masango, even these fees will not allow the government to recover all costs related to the production of passports.
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