The government is set to establish a fully-fledged Immigration office in Kericho County to serve South Rift residents who have for years endured lengthy journeys to acquire passports and other essential travel documents from the neighbouring counties. Speaking to the media at the Kericho Huduma Centre where the new Immigration offices will be situated, State Department for Immigration and Citizen Services Principal Secretary Amb. Prof. Julius Kibet Bitok announced that the office will be adequately equipped to ensure smooth running of immigration and citizen services. The Immigration PS stressed that the forthcoming Immigration office will alleviate the strain on Kisumu and Eldoret regional offices and also bring about substantial savings in terms of both time and travel expenses for passports applicants. 'We have assessed the building, the space available, the logistics required and I am delighted to announce that we are set to unveil our plan for a new Immigration office in Kericho town, which will be operational from 1st January next year,' said Prof. Bitok. He explained that the department will be able to facilitate efficient travel and immigration regulations for citizens including issuance of passports, work permits and citizenship services. 'Additionally, during my visit around the services offered at the Kericho Huduma Centre, I had the pleasure of stopping by the Civil Registration Services (CRS) Kenya desk, which I learnt, diligently processed approximately 60 passports each day,' Prof Bitok added. Meanwhile the PS assured that the government has already dealt with the pertinent issue of delays in issuance of passports countrywide saying that six hundred thousand booklets will be available in the country for possessing of passports promising that applicants will be able to receive passports within 14 days. 'There has been a challenge in the issuance of passports due to insufficient passport booklets occasioned by closure of companies that manufacture the booklets during the Covid-19 pandemic, but the government has now sorted out the situation.' The Immigration PS was accompanied by the Kericho Senator, Aaron Cheruiyot, and Ainamoi MP Amb. Benjamin Langat who was equally delighted that South Rift residents would benefit from the new Immigration office. 'The government is encouraging Kenyans to apply for passports and get the opportunity to travel and work abroad and therefore this office will play a significant role,' said Senator Cheruiyot.
Source: Kenya News Agency