Albert-Poyotte Says No Need For Rush To Get e-Passports

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Home Affairs Minister Dr. Virginia Albert-Poyotte has advised citizens that there’s no need to rush to obtain Saint Lucia’s new e-passports, as existing travel documents are due for renewal after expiry.

“They can use the passport they have now until it expires. They can travel on it,” the Babonneau MP told reporters on Tuesday on the sidelines of a meeting of parliament.

But she explained that some people seem not to have received the message.

“I am hoping that this time they get it clear that there’s no need to rush to get the e-passports because they can use their machine-readable passport until it expires,” Albert-Poyotte stated.

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She asserted that thousands of passports do not expire in the same week or on the same day.

“it’s just a few and sometimes they come in the morning and you see a long line, but by before midday, the line is back to normal. It is something that can be managed,” Albert-Poyotte told reporters.

“We are getting rumours of some malpractices,” she said in response to a question regarding people selling spaces in the queue at the Immigration Department.

“I do not want to conclude it as facts, but we know some people are using all kinds of tricks. There are some people I understood who are getting some false travel itinerary to indicate that they have to travel urgently and after they have gotten their passport they cancel their travel,” Albert-Poyotte noted.

In this regard, the Minister advised that Saint Lucians should not engage in such devious behaviour.

“We are trying out best to help them and therefore they should stop,” Albert-Poyotte declared.

She said if people are selling spots in queues, it’s part of the malpractices and tricks giving the impression that the lines at the Immigration Department are extremely long.

“Everybody who needed their passport to travel so far has not complained that they did not get their passports,” she stated.

Headline photo: Queue outside Immigration Department Office on July 26, 2022

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Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
Our Editorial Staff at St. Lucia Times is a team publishing news and other articles to over 200,000 regular monthly readers in Saint Lucia and in over 150 other countries worldwide.

5 COMMENTS

  1. i believe what the minister is trying to say is that if your passport is expiring for example within a month or two and you dont need or have to travel especially if its an emergency you do not need to come and get a new epassport and make the lines long for no reason when there are others who have legitimate reasons and intentions to travel. You can wait for when the passport expires to renew it and also you can still use it if you do need to travel until it expires

  2. She must be an idiot because many destinations advise you need at least six months validity on your passport to enter their country! Fix the system and stfu!

    • Clearly there is a disconnect between the Minister and what is happening at the immigration office. People who are not well connected or don’t have any “links” had no choice but to come in everyday in the hope of getting their passport process.

      For the week I was present at this office, I would have noticed many people obtaining their passport mere hours before their check in times after having to spent many days on ridiculous lines.

      There was clearly a lack of leadership, lack of a defined process chain and definitely a lack of empathy from the staff.

  3. Sad that instead of addressing the ugly truth, this so called PhD blames free citizens for trying to enjoy the right to free movement across the world. How the hell as a big minister you telling people they can travel on a passport until the expiry date and even the rats underneath Castries know that the USA requires at least 6 months of passport eligibility for entry. I dont understand why no one has sued the government of saint lucia on this matter as yet.

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