Technology Breakthrough: Rwanda Launches Automated Passport Scans


cialis 40mg geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 115%;”>This makes Rwanda the first country in the East African region to introduce such technology and cementing its place as a leader in tech innovation on the African continent.

drug geneva;”>The launch brings to a close four years worth of preparatory work, illness with the system having undergone a successful pilot process.

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Rwandan passport holders will now be able to use two electronic gates, known as Automated Passenger Clearance Systems (APCS), to automatically gain clearance to enter the country.

An electronic passport reader and fingerprint scanner remove the need for human input and passport stamps, and will save much time at arrivals. Kigali International Airport is expecting 100,000 extra passengers to use the airport this year, having had 350,000 in 2011.

The whole process takes just 17 seconds, according to the Civil Aviation Authority. It is part of a concerted effort to improve all services at the airport and crack down on cross border crimes.

The system is well protected from any attempts by passengers to illegally pass through the gates. Thought to be the first in Africa, it boosts Rwanda’s reputation as an innovative technological nation.

“It’s clear that this airport is not big enough and the technology will reduce the tendency of waiting in long queues for clearance,” said Ange Sebutege, Public Relations Officer at the Directorate of Immigration and Emigration.

Officials said it was important that the rest of the airport followed the example of immigration and improved their services.

Rwandair CEO John Mirenge said that though other programmes were being put in place to expand the airport and make entering and leaving Rwanda an easier experience, in the meantime other departments had to focus on speed and efficiency.

“This new technology will enable passengers move swiftly through immigration procedures and it is important that all the other services within the airport follow suit in quickening their services,” he said.

It is the latest technological advancement for the Directorate, which last year won an Intego award for the best institution in e-Government. It also won the prestigious African Association for Public Administration and Management (AAPAM) award in 2009 for its Online Visa Application project.


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