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Service at passport office not so world-class anymore

MALAYSIA once could claim world- class efficiency in the issuance of passports, with the Immigration Department able to issue new passports or renew them in under two hours. Malaysia ImmigrationBut this changed recently with the upgrading of the passport and implementation of a new processing system – it now takes up to one week to renew a passport. My experience with the department last week left me frustrated and disappointed over the drop in standard of service and efficiency. I had to make two trips to the immigration offices in Putrajaya and Kelana Jaya just to submit my application for passport renewal, which took about eight hours. Applicants were told that the delay was due to a new system. Let me suggest to the Immigration director-general how this transition could be better handled. 1. The department website has to be updated regularly with the latest information and status. For example, the current website does not tell you that the passport renewal now cannot be done within the same day due to the system upgrade. Further, all passport photos now need a white background instead of the previous blue background. 2. The vendor selected to upgrade the system should have been given a fixed time frame with rigid standards so as to complete the job with urgency. The present upgrading plan seems to have many shortcomings – it is not properly planned and executed. The branch offices say it is beyond them to solve the problem which is handled at HQ level. 3. In the Kelana Jaya office, not all the counters were manned. We were told some officers were attending a course while some others were having their 30-minute tea break (this could have been reduced to 10 minutes under the circumstances). The system breakdown lasts almost half an hour each time and needs to be restored by the HQ. I was told such breakdowns were frequent. Can I suggest that the branch heads improve efficiency to serve the public better by extending working hours to 9pm during this transition period. 4. The Immigration Department should issue a press statement to inform the public on how the matter will be handled in the coming weeks.The public should also be told when the whole process can be completed. We look forward to a quick return to world class efficiency in the issuance of Malaysian passports. Source: http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2013/5/29/focus/13164071&sec=focus

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