The Minister of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs Dorcas Makgato told Parliament on Wednesday that her ministry was highly concerned about huge numbers of expired Identity Cards, otherwise known as Omang, which have not been renewed since 1998.
The cards number 195,844, she said.
She said the production of Omang stood at 1,500 per day and the ministry was now aiming at doubling production to 3,000 cards per day.
This would enable the Ministry to have cleared the backlog by August 31, 2018 in preparation for registration for the general elections, the Minister told Parliament.
She said that one of the areas her ministry was working on was service delivery, which was a short-term implementation impediment that the ministry was working on addressing.
To improve service delivery, she has identified administrative impediments and classified them as short, medium and long terms respectively.
She said the ministry has requested an additional 44 vehicles from the Ministry of Transport and Communication and 24 of these vehicles have already been provided and deployed to Tsabong, Serowe, Palapye, Letlhakane, Bobonong, Sefhare, Mahalapye, Nata, Gaborone and Selebi-Phikwe where outreach programmes have already started.
The outreach programmes are meant to
She also revealed that the Ministry no longer confiscated Omang cards from the public unless obtained fraudulently.
As one of the ways of safeguarding the national identity, the Ministry has included the Omang renewals to facilitate Batswana who enjoy dual citizenship to renounce within the prescribed time.
The renunciation process is carried out through the completion of a renunciation form renouncing the citizenship of the other country.
Also, that this envisaged process would reduce the turnaround time the applicants will be assisted in, as it will be swift compared to the current three to six months.
In the statement, the Ministry committed to facilitate movement of people across borders to promote investment, tourism and relations with other countries by identifying impediments to delays in issuance of Visa as well as work and residence permits.