Written by Richard Kayenda
It is no longer a secret that the Malawi’s Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services has for a long time been milking Malawians by making them pay for passports at an exorbitant price which would otherwise be at K14, 000 per ordinary copy.
According to some impeccable sources, what the State Vice President Dr Saulos Klaus Chilima used to say in his campaign rallies that a passport can be reduced from K80, 000 to as low as K14, 000 is not only possible but also realistic.
This, therefore, means that government through the passport issuing department has been punishing innocent Malawians by pegging the passport charges at the highest peak, possibly making it the most expensive document in Africa.
The source further discloses that the department purchases a passport book from Techno Brain at K2, 764. 20. But how its final charge skyrockets to K80, 000 or higher is not only puzzling but questionable at the same time.
It is, thus, an open secret that part of what Malawians have been paying for the document, was going into the pockets of some individuals within the ranks and file of the department.
No wonder, then, that this department, just like the Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services, Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) and other departments, is well known for corruption in the country.