$57.5M Immigration and Passport office commissioned in Berbice

―after months of successful testing

―facility equipped to render effective and efficient service

―similar facility is to be commissioned in Region 10 next week

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, February 13, 2020

The $57.5Million Immigration and Passport Office in East Berbice-Corentyne was formally commissioned by Director-General (DG) of the Ministry of the Presidency, Joseph Harmon, Thursday afternoon.

Minister of Citizenship, the Hon. Winston Felix explained that following the completion of the building at Ordnance, Fortland, Canje on 5 May 2019, it was put into service to test the equipment and the efficiency of the services offered.

During this period, Minister Felix said some 6,122 applications were accepted and successfully processed. “Citizens are assured that their applications will be processed within eight days of the submission of their applications,” he assured.

During the opening ceremony, DG Harmon noted that the facility is part of a wider fundamental change the government intends to achieve in the provision of its services.

“What is happening in Immigration is symptomatic to what is happening in this entire country. When we came into office, we took this position that the suffering which we saw people go through to access government service, we had to put that to an end.”

As the Coalition Government moves to decentralise its major services in all administrative regions, the facility which is located at Ordnance, Fortland, Canje was welcomed by residents.

New Amsterdam resident Susan Farley, recalled that “Previously we had to leave home at least by 2am in the mornings just to get at the office in Georgetown on time and be in that long line. I am happy that we don’t have to be spending that time now.”

Canje resident, Murlin Garib said she appreciates the move since it would mean residents would save on transportation costs. And Principal of the New Amsterdam Secondary School, Vanessa Jacobs noted that the office “is easily accessible, and that is a relief,” the Headteacher added.

It was disclosed that the Immigration and Passport Office in Retrieve Linden, Region 10 will be officially commissioned on February 21. Lindeners have been benefitting from services such as the renewal of passports, or the replacement of lost, damaged or filled passports as well as the application of birth, marriage and death certificates.

Also present at today’s event was Minister of Education, Dr. the Honorable Nicolette Henry, Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Hon. Jaipaul Sharma, Foreign Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Carl Greenidge, Regional Executive Officer, Kim Williams-Stephen and acting Mayor of New Amsterdam, Wainwright McIntosh, among others.

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