CDEDI to hold demonstrations over passports

Activist Sylvester Namiwa who leads Cdedi

The Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI) says it will mobilize nationwide peaceful demonstrations if Ministry of Homeland Security fails respond to its demands on the status of passport printing in the country.

This has been communicated in a letter that has been made available to this publication and written by Executive Director for CDEDI Sylvester Namiwa.

On 25 January, the Department of Immigration informed Malawians that its passport issuance system had shut down and needed to be repaired as the department was unable to print passports.

Four days later, the department said it was carrying out extensive maintenance works on the sytem. However, the works are yet to be completed and the department is still not printing passports as of 20 February.

Namiwa in the letter has demanded Minister of Homeland Security Ken Zikhale Ng’oma to explain to Malawians what really happened to the system.

He has also demanded the Minister to justify the involvement of the e-government department in the ‘extensive maintenance works’.

He has further asked Ng’oma to make public all the contracts government signed with Techno Brain which was supplying passport booklets to the government.

“CDEDI is demanding your office to explain to the nation on the exact day when printing of passport will resume,” says Namiwa.

Reports indicate that the system shut down because Immigration officials attempted to print passports after the licence for the system had expired.