Government through the Ministry of Internal Affairs has asked Ugandan travellers moving through Entebbe international airport to start using their electronic passports to clear into and out of the country.
This is done through swiping passports in the digital machines at the newly installed electronic gates at the airport.
According to government, this development was done to save clearance time and also reduce on the commotion but surprisingly the public has not fully embraced it as more travellers still line up to have their passports stamped physically.
“Our e-gates at the airport are up and running. We encourage Ugandans who are traveling to make use of them. There is no need for you with an electronic passport to keep queuing for immigration to stamp for you when you can clear yourself by swiping your passport and the gates open for you,” said Simon Peter Mundeyi, the Ministry of Internal Affairs spokesperson.
Mundeyi explained that the tendency of stamping passports is outdated simply because if one swipes the passport in the machine, all details of the travel are captured in the system.
He said that the system is also intelligent enough to recognise that the traveller has returned and it lets them back in the country.
“There is no need to do things of the past, I encourage Ugandans who have advanced passports not to wait at counters. These passports have a chip which contains all personal details therefore use electronic gates,” Mundeyi emphasised.
In addition, a new baggage handling system featuring X-ray monitors has been placed in the check-in area to improve the baggage handling capacity from 500-700 bags an hour to approximately 1,200 to 1,800 bags an hour.
Also six check-in counters have also been installed to enhance security at the facility.