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New e-passport: All you need to know

Kampala, Uganda | ISAAC KHISA | The Directorate of Citizenship and Immigration Control is set to rollout a new International East African passports to replace the current ones.

The exercise that starts in January 2019 is an initiative of the EAC Heads of State to synchronise passports across the region.The e-passport is expected to comply with guidelines set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation, making it acceptable around the world.

Kenya is already issuing the latest passports in an exercise that started last year while Tanzania plans to do so in 2020.

Here is all you need to know about the planned e-passport.

Distinct features:  The new International EAC e-passport will be a physical passport like the current ones but will be embedded with a secure electronic chip that will contain more details including a bio data page that will have special security features.

The new passport will also have more security features like the Coat of Arms, the Crested Crane, the Mountain Gorilla, the Independence Monument, Murchison Falls and the fishing man.

Phase out East African Passport: The new International East African e-passport will replace and eventually phase out the current East African (Blue) and National Machine readable passports (Black, Red and Green).

Application/Renewal: Applicants for the e-passports will be required to appear in person at the Passport Offices and have their facial and finger prints taken. Ugandans with a valid National Identification card will not need to go to the Local Council for clearance.  Those without IDs will be required to register with NIRA prior to applying for the Passport.

Those intending to apply for new passports or to do renewal are encouraged to do so in January 2019 unless there’s an urgent need to travel within the remaining period. Those travelling to Kenya and Rwanda are advised to use their ID, Temporary Movement Permits and Certificates of Identity.

How it works:The new passport will ease clearance at the entry/exit points. It will facilitate use of e-gates for self clearance, automated issuance of Boarding Passes, and quicker processing across airports worldwide where e-passport reader equipment is installed.

Issuing periods: e-passports will be issued for a period of two years from 2019 2021.

Diaspora community –Ugandans in the Diaspora will be able to make applications for the e-passports at seven missions abroad by November 2019.

Fees: The new International East African e-passport shall cost Shs250, 000 for the Ordinary e-Passport category under the normal service standards of seven days. Those who want the Express service that takes two days will be required to pay an extra fee of Shs150, 000. Official passports shall cost Shs400, 000 while Diplomatic Passport shall cost Shs500, 000.

New applicant’s who paid Shs 150,000 and are yet to receive their passports will be required to top up Shs 100,000 for the e-passport. Those who paid through the Express service scheme will get the new e-passport at no additional cost.

How transition is to be managed:  In the interest of providing un-interrupted service during the transition, some e-passports will be issued to citizens during the pilot period prior to commissioning the e-Passport System. These e-passports, according to Benon Mutambi, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Internal Affairs, will be valid and can be used for travel, but their chips will be inactive.

Those who will be issued with e-passports during the pilot phase will be required to return to immigration headquarters to have their biometric features taken so that their chips are activated.  This will be done after January 2019 but not later than January 2021.


  1. I need a passport before 15th January what advice can u give me???

    • go to kenya bcoz Uganda we are still money minded. God help us

    • The question first question is whether you have a traditional passport or you are a new applicant?

      You can follow this.

      A citizen wishing to process an e-passport will have to fill in an online application form from the Ministry of Internal Affairs. After this is done, the person processing the e-passport will be required to go to an Immigration Centre in their locality in order to have their data verified against the data from the NIRA database. This done, and after paying the stipulated sum, one should be able to receive their e-passport within a period of two weeks.
      This new process will replace the old procedure whereby an applicant is required to fill two forms and have them endorsed by three LC chairpersons along with two security officers.

      • I went to the ministry of internal affairs and they gave me a form to fill in hard copy not as u have mentioned that it’s online! What advice are you giving me?? Will I successfully process my passport because I am going to travel the coming month. Thank you

  2. i paid 150000 and not knowing that the passportss where stopped what should u do i still have the reciept help me what should i do

  3. I thought the council for east Africa set a standard price for the passport. Why is it that Ugandans have to pay 65 dollars and Kenyans pay 45 dollars for the same? Secondly, if this was agreed, why is it some countries are still thinking to implement it, moreover in 2020 like Tanzania, but Uganda is rushing us to implement it in January 2019, why the rush?
    Lastly, why is the ministry of information not informing Ugandans about the coming up of the passports to the citizens, even the speaker of parliament ‘s Kadaga is asking what the passport is all about.

  4. The only question I have what about us who have the old passports and they are still active will we need to cancel them in order to get the e passport

    • Starting January 15th 2019, the official travel documents will be the e-passport. Holders of traditional passport books will still be able to use them for travel and other official purposes until January 15th 2021. Ugandans with National IDs can still travel within the East African region using only their IDs.

  5. what about if I have mine which is still valid and I need to exchange with the E-passport, how much do I required to pay?

    • An ordinary e-passport will cost UGX 250,000 ($67 at current rates)
      An Official/Service e-passport will cost UGX 400,000 ($107 at current rates)
      A Diplomatic e-passport will cost UGX 500,000 ($134 at current rates)

      • My question is, what procedures do I follow to upgrade from old passport to the e passport? Do I need to start all over again?

  6. You can not receive a passport easily if you don’t have pipo whom or who knows you at the bureau. You guys tell pipo the truth about money for mukulu. I personally failed to get mine becoz I was not ready to pay the so called mukulu.

  7. My question is if am abroad and they have already stamped me visa to go to uganda and then come back abroad, will i manage that when the passport is changing how will the visa information be shifted in the new so called E passport?

    • Starting January 15th 2019, the official travel documents will be the e-passport. Holders of traditional passport books will still be able to use them for travel and other official purposes until January 15th 2021. Ugandans with National IDs can still travel within the East African region using only their IDs.

  8. Thanks for this actually am impressed but do we surely mean what we posted on our page?. because you said you phased out all the processes of LCs and alike and yet we ar given the forms to go into all processes of reaching out to the signatories???!!!!

  9. Dont we need to pay,fill some forms from there and present our IDs then finaly interviews?thanks

    • A citizen wishing to process an e-passport will have to fill in an online application form from the Ministry of Internal Affairs. After this is done, the person processing the e-passport will be required to go to an Immigration Centre in their locality in order to have their data verified against the data from the NIRA database. This done, and after paying the stipulated sum, one should be able to receive their e-passport within a period of two weeks.

      • Halo, the online forms seem to be the Forms and form B, r we required to print them and them fill them together with recommendation letters? Thanks

      • What are those immigration centres like? I haven’t seen any in my locality

    • On 🆔 they do as for SIM card registration

  10. Time is money, if Africa learns this slogan, then we shall grow wealthier in a short period of time. A passport shouldn’t be a delayed issue to be given to citizens who have been approved legal. I have lost a lot of : time, trust, from my people because of my delayed passport yet I handed in all the legalities leaving out none.

  11. I applied for a passport in November and I have not gotten it yet.
    Should I expect an e_passport or I go back and fill a new form?

    • Nakiganda Deborah

      I applied for a passport renewal but 2 months after they introduced e passports I kept checking on them but I was told that my passport is not yet issued out. Then they told me to pay for a top up after paying now I was told to consider that payment as a fine. That the government announced for the people to pick their passport we didn’t pick them. Yet I was told that they will call us when the passport is ready. Now I was told to apply again for another passport

      • Mukaaya Nicholas Caesar

        They played you, the amount you paid for top up was for the e-passport and you were supposed to reapply for the same with the two receipts you had. Hope you got it or if not it can be rectified if both of the recieipts are still less than 5 months old.
        Otherwise most missions or embassies as you may call them are now considering the new e-passport. So follow the new process and reapply for the new e-passport.

  12. Mr king sir,
    Let’s hope services Will be as stipulated

  13. You need to assure all the citizens who are in a huge waiting logue of getting their passports on when and how possibly they can come out of the anxiety.

  14. I have been told that the e-passports aren’t recognized in other airports. A friend told me that some members of Parliament were arrested in Dubai.
    How true is this???

    And also, its 30th today, have the e-passports been issued yet?? Does anyone have them?? Have they travelled with them safely???

  15. Am in Eastern Ugandan so if am to apply for e-passport where am I supposed tovdo so? En total costs for the whole procedure?

  16. Its now 3 weeks ever since I processed my passport but I haven’t received it yet
    What could be the matter?

  17. I want a passport before one month but my national identity is not yet out how can I do

  18. I do not have an ID but i need a passport before may, is that possible for me? Please send me an email on if you have a relevant reply for me.

  19. Am abroad my passport got lost I tried to replace it while away but the ones I told to help me with it they were told it’s not possible ,please help me bcz my contract is to end in October but I need a passport to travel back home ,I hv my ID here

  20. Do we need again to fill forms has it been to get a passport or this time its different

  21. Am Joel in Dubai , is it possible to renew my passport with national because I don’t have it and I need my passport ugertly, I need your advice pliz

  22. tumuhimbise aggrey

    Hi citizens,

    If i want a traditional passport, Can I still process it today? someone kindly help me and give me feedback soon.

  23. I processed my passport i September 2018 but upto today, I have got it. wats the delay banange??


    I have a trip to Germany on may 15th and processing the passport on an ordinary scheme. Am really worried as to whether it will take me the stated one week to process it. Please I need some clarity of the exact period it is to take. Thank you.

  25. Me I have paid the express passport and done with the interview. But it’s 4weeks now no passport.

  26. Mubangizi emmanuel

    Me I applied for apassport in December and l couldn’t got it should l expect e.passport or not

  27. Am Lizzie Ibrahim l paid my money in March I was topping up. Up-to now I have not received my pass port what should I do

  28. I applied for a pass port last year and when 2019 comes I went there to check they told me to top up I did it in March up to now I have not got Mine what is the problem in the office.

  29. I topped up on my pass port in March up to now I have not got my pass port what’s wrong in the office

  30. If I want to apply for d express one how long will it take is it two days as you say or

  31. How long can it take to get a diplomatic pp n do I need also to get forms or just a national id

  32. I got my passport in 2017, when they are still at 150000. Can I still use it to travel or I need that one of EA

  33. hey i have my old passport and its still valid but i want to get the new one within two weeks
    is it possible

  34. My question is if I don’t have national IDD. Can I get e-passport

  35. Amale Joshua morris

    Please I need to apply for denmark passport..please I need guidelines on how to obtain it.

  36. Can i get a passport when my national id is not yet ready

  37. How do i get a passport without a national id

  38. Please give the most clear directive, I have personally tried applying for passport. But I messed up. Which relevant authorities must I consult.

  39. TUMWESIGYE rogers

    Hello am Roger inquiring, I would like to renew my passport which is expired now. I have downloaded form G but Wondering whether am supposed to fill the whole form like a first time applicant o I fill the first page am confused please guide me.

  40. Its not fair surely,how comes that some one who paid sh150000n got a passport is still to pay sh250000,the sama amount with the person who has never got a passport.
    Meaning, WILLIAM paid sh150000in 2018, n now he has to pay sh250000 in 2021 for an e-passport which sums up sh400000in 13years
    Hance SARAH WILL pay only 250000.
    Say something about that

  41. If I just got my old passport had it has like 8 years remaining for it to expire, will i be in position to finish up with it before the renewal or i have to pay fresh money again for the new one.

  42. i have an old ugandan passport but i don’t have a national ID, do i need a national ID to get the e-passport.

  43. I applied my passport at ministry of internal affairs mbale branch, my passport is ready why are they reffering me to pick it from Kampala?


  45. I think that express mean you can get what u required immediate , why is it that we have to wait for those 2 days

  46. Hi There.
    I work with a registered tour and travel agency permitted to process passports on behalf of our client, How will the procedure then be for us such agencies applying on behalf of others.

    Thank You

  47. Hello ,im abroad and my ordinary passport is still valid untill 2025. Will i be able to travel back to my home country uganda using that very ordinary passport after 2021.i heard news that the ordinary passports will be phased out by 2021,are there chances of postponding them.??

  48. I want to travel in October and I comung back in the same month but I hold a old passport, will I be able to travel using my old black passport

  49. I did My passport interview on 10/2/2021and the told me I will be alerted with in 10 working days but up to now no SMS yet, how I will I know if my passport is ready

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  56. Nakachwa Proscovia

    Hello . Can i have two passports. A Ugandan and East African passport. Please let me know.

  57. Hello, where do I start from. Or which process should I take to replace my passport from a Ugandan one to a East Africa community one

  58. I applied for an ordinary passport in 2018 but hadn’t got it till now because of national ID issues.
    Is it possible for me to top up the 100000# and get the e- passport?

  59. I have regasterd for ordinary passport and I made transaction of 150,000 in 2017.
    Am still having the file in my hands,can I make topup and get my passport?

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