Balkh residents complain of delays in passports processing
MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Nearly 32,000 electronic passports have been issued to people over the past one year in northern Balkh province, officials said on Sunday, amid complaints about the process being lengthy and time-consuming.
A resident of Mazar-i-Sharif, Ahmad Fahim Badkhash, told Pajhwok Afghan News he had been joining queues and waiting from dawn to dusk over the past two weeks, but he was yet to get his passport because security officials intentionally delayed the issuance of passports.
Security officials brought in lists with them and asked for issuing passports to people they had connections with, but others had wait in front of the passport office for months, he said.
More than a month ago, he had completed all the procedures for getting a passport, but he was yet to get the passport, a resident of Mazar-i-Sharif Saboor Nizami, said.
The passport department manager, Lt. Col. Sher Ahmad Sherjan, said 200 to 300 people applied for passports each day and the main duty of their department was to collect documents and send them to the main office in Kabul.
“As we get passports back from Kabul, we hand them over to the owners,” he said, denying double standard in issuing passports to officials and ordinary people.
He said they issued 2,000 to 5,000 passports every month and over the past one year, they had issued 31931 passports to people.
“The process takes much time because many people refer to the department and the issuance of passport is related to the passport department in Kabul.”
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.