, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 17 – Kenya’s Immigration Department has announced that it will start to issue citizens with e-passports beginning next month.
According to the Immigration Department, the upgrade is expected to facilitate faster clearance at ports of entry and exit and will apply to new applications/renewals before the current passport is phased out.
The difference between the current passport and the e-Passport is that the e-passport will have a chip that stores the passport holder’s biometric information, said the department.
“Application procedures remain the same, that is through ecitizen.co.ke and the cost (of application) will remain the same,” the department wrote on its Twitter Account.
Through the ecitizen portal, applicants pay Sh4,550 for a 32-page passport while 48-page passport costs Sh6,050.
To this end, the e-Passport will replace the ordinary passports used, as well as the EAC passport within the next two years.
“Smart gates that will be used alongside the e-passports will be introduced at our airports,” the department added.
The issuance of the e-passports, which have delayed for two years, is part of a wider East Africa strategy to enhance integration with the passports set to be rolled out in the other EAC countries in the coming months.
Nearly 50 countries have issued e-passports to their citizens including Ghana, Gabon, Egypt, Morocco and Mauritius.