Delayed Passports, NRCs issuance undermining Zambia’s Economic Diplomacy, protests CLRI’s Mundia Paul Hakoola
By DERRICK SINJELA
Continental Leadership Research Institute (CLRI) Executive Director Mundia Paul Hakoola is pleading with government to move from a manual system of issuing Passports and National Registration Cards-NRCs to a digital system as the traditional process is frustrating citizens seeking a maiden or those renewing travel document..
Mr. Hakoola’s concern and advisory emanate from a CLRI’s review of accessibility of the aforementioned documents, with findings indicating that the basic 21 days time-frame issuance for Passport goes beyond four months.
Hakoola says the occurrence has prevented active participation of citizens in regional trade between countries as well as economic diplomacy, hence must be reduced to less than a week.
Hakoola has raised concern that despite government’s narrative to enhance economic diplomacy as one of the major foreign policies, there are still some challenges in acquiring Passports and NRCs.
Hakoola explains that a passport is needed for one to travel to countries around the region and beyond to do business and other engagements.
The CLRI Executive Director says that the lengthily process in acquiring the national documents undermines policy statements that have been given and works against economic targets that are expected.
Hakoola feels that digital issuance of NRCs will lessen errors such as having two or more people on one identification number.