KAMPALA — The Senior Presidential Advisor on Diaspora Affairs, Ambassador Abbey Walusimbi has met with the Ministry of Internal Affairs over ease of e-visa issuance to all travelers to Uganda.
The Kampala meeting between Mr. Walusimbi and Gen. Apollo Gowa Kasiita who is the Director Directorate of Citizenship and Immigration Control (DCIC) was aimed at easing the processing of e-visa applications to foreign visitors, investors, tourists, and Diasporas to Uganda.
This website understands that government intends to abolish the issuance of visas at entry points as well as Embassies by encouraging all travelers to make use of e-visas.
Uganda’s Electronic Visa and Permit system went live in July 2016.
In the process, it created a remarkably simple and straightforward online platform for visa applications.
Before traveling to the east African country, applicants now fill out the necessary details in the e-Visa web portal.
Bonafide visitors then receive a bar-coded Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) by email.
On arrival at any Ugandan border post or airport, that email must be presented, and the barcode is scanned into the country’s immigration system, along with the holder’s fingerprints.
Upon payment of an appropriate fee, a visa is printed and inserted into the passport, which has also been verified.
Concern as scammers target unspeceting visitors, investors
The two shared information received from independent sources, about a number of online companies that have allegedly been defrauding both Ugandans and other people that want to get into the country in the name of giving them E- visas, only to get to the airport and they can’t go beyond immigration.
On his part, Gen. Gowa assured Mr. Walusimbi that Internal Affiars Ministry has already put in place a counter plan to ensure that such activities cease to take place.
“We have designed a website that will be used by everyone intending to enter Uganda to apply for and be issued with authentic E-visas in a timely manner,” he said adding that this will be up and running by end of September 2021.
Gen. Gowa also revealed a government plan to narrow channels through which people are getting into the country through wrong channels. He said this new initiative will ensure the security of each individual that enters the country is guaranteed.
The ambassador as well highlighted that one of the reasons people find it hard to get visas is because guidelines are not so clearly understood by most people.
On this, Gen. Gowa noted that: “Government is soon embarking on a video recording campaign that gives applicants a step by step guide to getting the E-Visa to Uganda in different languages. These will soon be posted to the different digital media platforms used by all the relevant government stakeholders.”
He further appealed to the ministry and respective embassies to set up 24hour WhatsApp lines, Emails and other easy to access platforms that are used by the Diaspora in different countries so as to cater for the time differences, in a bid to efficiently serve the people who want to come into the country for business or acquire E-Visas and other Travel or National IDs.
Ambassador Walusimbi also raised the issue of the Yellow fever vaccination requirement for people coming into the country advising that those coming in from countries that have no access to the vaccine should be allowed to have it the airport.