THE congestion reported at the Immigration offices, especially in the Klang Valley, is due to the sharp increase in applications and renewals of Malaysian International Passport.
Immigration DG Datuk Seri Khairul Dzaimee Daud said passport applications and renewals had increased by 65% this time, causing congestion at Immigration offices, especially in the Klang Valley.
He said the Immigration Department had a supply of more than 1.2 million passports that could accommodate the sharp increase in passport applications and renewals.
“The supply of passports is sufficient, we have more than 1.2 million (passports) in the store and if it runs out, the supplier will add more,” he told Bernama today when asked to comment on the congestion at the Immigration counters.
Khairul Dzaimee said one of the factors behind the congestion at the Immigration offices was due to many people being present at the same time, especially in the morning, for passport applications and renewals.
“For example, at the Immigration office in Shah Alam, Selangor, the office is narrow and many turned up in the morning to get a passport…when they can come in the afternoon,” he said.
The operating hours at six Immigration offices were extended to 10pm while the other six were extended to 6pm from May 11, to accommodate the sudden increase.
The six premises with extended operating hours until 10pm are the Immigration Department offices in Putrajaya, Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Johor, Negeri Sembilan and Melaka, while those in Penang, Kedah, Perak, Kelantan, Terengganu and Perlis will operate until 6pm.
Khairul Dzaimee advised the public to take the opportunity of the current school holidays to apply for and renew their passports at the Immigration offices outside the Klang Valley.
“We have Immigration offices that manage passport issuance and they are not as busy as in Putrajaya or Shah Alam. Offices in Perlis, Kedah, Pahang and Terengganu are among those that are not busy with low demand for passports,” he said.
Khairul Dzaimee also advised the public to ensure that they have reasons such as official business and travel to apply for or renew their passports.
“If there are no pressing reasons then there is no need to apply for a passport yet. I randomly asked 10 applicants, of which six said they did not have any plan yet,” he said. — Bernama / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL