Cabinet has welcomed the official launch of the eChannel pilot project of the department of home affairs, which makes ID applications simpler through technology.
The project was launched by President Jacob Zuma earlier this month. The new system allows citizens to apply for their smart ID cards online and avoid long queues.
Addressing a post-cabinet briefing on Thursday, minister in the presidency Jeff Radebe said eChannel is part of home affairs’ overall modernisation strategy to move services from paper to digital.
Through eChannel, citizens will be able to visit home affairs’ kiosks at banks to submit their fingerprints and pictures after having made appointments and payments online for smart ID applications and passports. The pilot project is initially open to 30- to 35-year-olds.
So far, 12 branches are piloting the project, eleven are in Gauteng and one is in the Western Cape. The banks have availed their facilities. They also ensure that there is proper branding for home affairs within their branches.
According to home affairs minister Malusi Gigaba, plans are underway to have the system implemented at other banks throughout the country.
Banks where home affairs services can be accessed are: Absa Lifestyle in Centurion; Absa Towers North; Absa Ghandi Square; FNB Lifestyle Centurion; FNB Menlyn; FNB Merchant Place; Nedbank Rivonia; Nedbank Roodepoort; Standard Bank Centurion; Standard Bank Killerney Rosebank and Standard Bank Canal Walk in the Western Cape. — SAnews