The Department of Home Affairs has noted that the waiting time for essential documents has decreased dramatically since its information capture system began involving biometrics, and recently stated that it will now take less than a week for new smart ID cards to be issued to locals.

Passports will now take only 13 working days to be issued.

In previous years, the waiting period for an ID to be processed could be up to six months, while a passport could take up to four months to process.

The Department made this announcement during its budget vote speech on Monday.

Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Njabulo Nzuza, said, “This is an improvement compared with the previous waiting period of six months for an ID and four months for a passport. However, we acknowledge that there are serious blockages in terms of service quality at offices, as evidenced in our interactions with citizens while visiting various front offices since we assumed office. The department will use the budget vote to acknowledge the work that is being done to clean the national population register.

“This will be done by strengthening the early birth registration programme and fighting fraudulent marriages.”

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Lucinda is a hard news writer who occasionally dabbles in lifestyle writing, and recent journalism graduate. She is a proud intersectional feminist, and is passionate about actively creating a world which is free of discrimination and inequality.