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Delays in issuing new passports almost resolved

Delays caused by the switch to the new Malaysian polycarbonate passports have almost been resolved. Immigration Department director-general Datuk Alias Ahmad said things have returned to normal in all offices except at the KDN Immigration Complex in Jalan Duta here which is still facing some glitches. Malaysia Immigration"It was fine last week, but we faced some technical problems today," he said yesterday, adding the problem would be rectified soon. He said the application and renewal process for passports in Pudu, Sentul and Wangsa Maju in Kuala Lumpur yesterday had improved. Last week, it was reported that applicants had to wait for up to 72 hours as the department was facing teething problems following the installation of new printing equipment for the passports at its offices nationwide. The new passport, issued since last month, features a biodata page made from polycarbonate. There have been complaints of delays in the issuance of the new passport, with many applicants frustrated with the long queues at Immigration offices. Yvonne David Michael, 49, had gone to the KDN Immigration Complex at 11.30am yesterday to renew passports for her son S. Thiru Kumaran, 17, and daughter S. Santhia, 15, and the process took four-and-a-half-hours. "I am disappointed that I have to wait until Thursday to collect the passport as I had planned to travel to Surabaya, Indonesia, on that day. "Now, we have to go on another day," she said. Another applicant, who only wanted to be known as Gertrude, 55, said that she and her daughter arrived at the complex at 6.45am and were 66th in line. "By the time I was done, it was 12.45pm and I have to wait until Thursday to collect my daughter's passport," she said, adding she used to wait less than two hours to get her passport done before. Gertrude said that the department should have informed people in advance about the change in the background colour of the passport photo from blue to white. Human resource senior manager Sadhana Patel said it was frustrating not knowing how long the renewal would take. "Productive time is wasted," she said, adding she had to apply for half-day leave. Source: http://www.asiaone.com/News/AsiaOne%2BNews/Malaysia/Story/A1Story20130528-425537.html

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