By Uganda Online Media
Entebbe: Uganda Airlines has announced that travelers with Machine Readable passports will not be allowed to travel out of the country and will be required to present e-passports starting today Tuesday 5 April 2022.
According to Uganda online, the move is in line with the Ministry of Internal Affairs and immigration’s decision to replace machine-readable passports with e-passports.
”All citizens traveling outside the country and to all our destinations will be required to travel using the new e-passports effective immediately, however, citizens coming back home are allowed to return using the machine-readable passports” Uganda Airlines announced this afternoon.
Uganda Airlines’ announcement followed the deadline announced by immigration for the phase-out of the Machine Readable Passport which was on 4th April 2022.
Since 2019, the Government, through the Directorate of Citizenship and Immigration in the Ministry of Internal Affairs has been issuing public notices informing Ugandans about the phasing out of old passports in preference to the new East African electronic passports (E-passports) and has been extending deadlines until April 4, 2022..
The new EAC e-passport is a fully digitized document incorporating biometric security, making it fully compliant with international best practices, and therefore accepted at border controls all over the world.
A number of Ugandans living abroad, have for a long time found it an uphill task when it comes to the renewal of their passports while still abroad, especially after the announcement of phasing out the old passports.
However, the ministry last month opened an e-passport enrollment center at the Uganda Embassy in Washington, DC and the center will see Ugandans in the US issue with the newly introduced East African Community e-passports.
Under the new system, applicants for the e-passports will be required to appear in person at the Embassy and have their facial and fingerprints taken.
The Washington, DC Passport Center is the second of the seven planned embassy roll-outs, under the Uganda Security Printing Company a Consortium of German Firm Veridos GmbH, and the state-owned Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation (UPPC).
The other Embassies which are designated Passport enrollment Centers include Uganda’s Missions in London, Ottawa, Pretoria, Copenhagen, Abu Dhabi, and Beijing.