Immigration Department wants more officers

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By Elizabeth Mandala:

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services has said it wants to recruit more officers in order to provide quality services to the public.

The department’s public relations officer, Joseph Chauwa, on Monday said this ahead of the pass-out parade of 247 recruits scheduled for Friday at Police Training School in Blantyre.

“The number of recruits has gone down from over 300 last year due to financial constraints,” he said.

Chauwa said the decline in the number of recruits would affect the department’s operations.

“Our country has long border lines and, because of this, we have little control over illegal immigrants. This is an international concern as most of these immigrants proceed to other countries without being detained.

“Malawi is being seen as a transit point for illegal immigrants coming from different countries and we do not want other countries, especially where these immigrants proceed to, to hold us responsible because we are failing to employ mechanisms of controlling our border points,” Chauwa said.

He said they were also concerned that there are no mechanisms of tracking down those who fail to pay for work permits once they apply for them.

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Chauwa said, since the department is second to Malawi Revenue Authority in revenue collection, the country’s economy might be losing out if migrants do not follow procedures due to inadequate personnel.

The department provides border control, travel documents, residential and work permits, among others services persons.—Mana

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