Passport System and Structure Still Pending at Immigration

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Updated: April 26, 2017

The ideal immigration system is still lacking in Belize but while the logistics of acquiring such are still being worked on, efforts in processing passport applications continue.  As you may recall in February 2016, there were issues with the passport printer which had led to the issuance of temporary passports and extensions of expired passports as opposed to renewed ones.  Since then the department has managed to get back to issuing new passports as explained by Minister of State for Immigration, Beverly Williams.

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

“The notice that we sent out indicated that we still continue to look for the development of a new system because that system is really weak but it is a system that is now up and functioning in most of the areas and the printer that we acquired is being used and it is being used to provide the services as we had before but it is not the best solution so we are still in the process of looking at the passport system. We had recent discussions with the international office of migration with the US embassy and so we are still looking at the system while we look at an area to accommodate us, that we can place the system and better manage that system for security and all the other controls that go along with a passport system.”

RENEE TRUJILLO

“So for now this printer was just an interim solution?”

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

“It’s an interim solution indeed.”

RENEE TRUJILLO

“Until you all find the ideal system.”

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

“Yes and that system would be ideal to how we develop it so it is what we want to develop but remember we have to have the best facilities to house such an important system.”

As we mentioned at the top of our store, a system at the Immigration Department is pending.  The challenge with that, however, is that the system goes hand in hand with a new structure which we know the Government has been exploring.  Minister Williams updated us on this issue.

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

“We are looking at a building in Belmopan and we are looking at the internal structures and how we will place things.  So we have to get the architects to draw those for us, look at what is needed in terms of space and management going forward with the staff with whatever improvements we will see in that area and to ensure we have a managed thing for the public. A managed area and a security area for all the system we use and the files we have in place. So we have to look at it holistically. It is in process.”

RENEE TRUJILLO

“I know the government took a lot of political flack when they spoke about the possibility of acquiring Lee Mark’s building is that still one of the options on the table?”

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

“No it’s not an option. I understand there is another organization that is looking at leasing that building.”

RENEE TRUJILLO

“Okay so that is off the table for immigration at least?”

BEVERLY WILLIAMS

“Yes.”

Procurement of the passport system will be done via the US Embassy.