The African Union will be launching the electronic passport next month in Kigali, Rwanda.
The project that dates back to 2014 and is part of Africa’s agenda of 2063. The project will facilitate free movement of persons, goods and services across Africa fostering intra-Africa trade, integration and socio-economic development.
The outgoing chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, has termed the project as symbolic and significant. She further said that it is a steady step towards the objective creation of a strong, prosperous and integrated Africa, driven by its citizens and capable of taking its rightful place in the world stage.
Initially the e-passport will be used by the African Union Heads of State and government, foreign affairs ministers and the permanent representatives of the African Union member states. The AU e-passports will be issued to this group of people in the upcoming 27th African Union summit in Kigali.
Some African countries such as Seychelles, Mauritius, Rwanda and Ghana have taken the lead in ensuring easy access across Africa by relaxing Visa restrictions and in some cases lifting visa requirements altogether for Africans. Africa is expected to have realised visa free travel by 2020.