In April, the government through the department of Immigration issued a directive that all passport application will be made via www.ecitizen.go.ke. The directive also targeted citizens seeking to renew and replace their passports. The Ecitizen portal is a centralized hub for 15 different government services bundled under business, marriage, driving, land, immigration and civil registration services. The services are offered by various departments in government including National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), Department of Immigration, Ministry of Lands and the State Law Office, under the office of the Attorney General. There are plans to add more services onto this portal.
How Do I use E-Citizen?
Using the Portal is pretty easy. First one has to create an account based on if they are a Kenyan Citizen, eVisa for visitors, Foreign resident or Business. For Citizens, the process is a four-step authentication. It prompts the system to ask for your ID number and first name, it fetches the details used to apply for the ID number including the photo. It then prompts to input your ID number, email address and phone number and on verification, prompts you to input your mobile phone number for which a code is sent to input and are done with the verification. The final stage involves adding a photo, if you do not want your ugly ID photo on there and you are set to go. You can then begin applying for the services available.
After registration, the next step is the login phase, where you are ushered into a portal with the services available. You login using your national ID number and the password created during the signing up process.
Department of Immigration Services
On Login, a dashboard with the various services available is presented. Our key area of interest if the Department of Immigration Services as we are applying for a passport. On clicking the Submit icon, we are ushered into a portal that allows them to submit their applications. You then get to choose between a Kenyan Visa or Passport and Temporary permits.
Step 1: Select Passport Application type
In my case I selected the Passport and Temporary permits section and was offered to select between Passport application for adults and passport application for children.
Step 2: Select Passport Size
On selecting which application applies to you, you are directed to a page that gives the application guidelines as well as the costs. You are then asked to apply for the passport. In addition to the cost of the passport, a service charge of 50/= is incurred for the application. The charges for the passports available in different page sizes include
- 32 Pages – Kshs. 4,550
- 48 pages – Kshs. 6,050
- 64 Pages – Kshs. 7,550
- East African Passport – Kshs. 990
- Diplomatic passport (48 page) – Kshs 7,550
- Mutilated Passport – Kshs 10,050
- Lost Passport Ksh. 12,050
- Temporary permit – Ksh. 300
I chose the Passports for Adult and the 48 pages Passport.
Step 3: Confirmation of Details
Upon selecting, the user is required to fill in their details, where a number progress line outlines the various steps involved in the application process. On completing, the user is then asked to review their passport application, to confirm if the details filled were in tandem with their true representation.
Step 4: Payment Services
The E-citizen portal continues to gain users with an announcement of over 400,000 Kenyans registered on the platform with 8,000 transactions performed. Revenue collections averaged Kshs. 10 Million daily. One of the core aspects in ensuring the success of the platform is the ability to integrate payments into the service offerings. The E-citizen portal is able to accept payments from up-to 13 service providers. Once our application is completed, we can pay for the service by selecting a button for the following payment modules available.
In this case, I selected M-Pesa as my preferred mode of payment, where I paid for the services via Lipa na M-Pesa.
Step 5: Payment and Application Confirmation
After following the steps as outlined, and making the payments one receives a confirmation message from the Ecitizen account confirming your payment.
The confirmation message is then followed by a message from the eCitizen advising on the next steps
After downloading the necessary documents, you then proceed to the Immigration offices for processing. Once your application is ready, you will receive an SMS alert and you can proceed to pick your passport.