By EDDIE OSIFELO
INLAND Revenue Division in the Ministry of Finance and Treasury has collected about $10.7 million from issuance of passports from 2021 to 2022 (January to July).
This after the Passport Unit in the Ministry of Commerce, Industries, Labour and Immigration issued a total of 13,304 passports in that 19-month period.
Permanent Secretary, Riley Mesepitu told the media last week that in the whole of 2021, a total of 8804 passports were issued, which was equivalent to $6 million.
He said from January to July this year, a total of 4500 passports were issued and costs about $4,713,000.
This brings the total to 13,304 passports, and equivalent to $10.7 million.
Mesepitu said more than 90 percent of passports issued were for seasonal workers.
Further to that, the PS clarified the delay of issuing passports due to only four people working in the office to meet the high demand of people every day.
As part of managing the inflow of people, Mesepitu said allocated days for seasonal workers are Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
He said Tuesday and Thursday for others.
Moreover, Mesepitu said the ministry plans to open mobile units in provincial centres like Auki and Gizo to help reduce costs of people coming to Honiara.
He said people in the provinces can enrol in the provincial centres to get their passports.