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Makaleng border pilots computerisation

Limpho Sello

MOHALE’S HOEK — The Makhaleng Bor­der Gate in Mohale’s Hoek was automated on Wednesday as the first in a long-term project meant to tighten all of Lesotho’s borders and eliminate illegitimate entries.

The infiltration-prone manual border control system will be replaced by a fool­proof computerised standard security control system at all the 14 borders into Lesotho.
Launching the digital system, the Min­ister of Home Affairs Joang Molapo said the event marked the beginning of a new era for the standardisation of border con­trol which would help ease border crime control.

“With the new system we will be able to prevent crimes such as human trafficking and drug smuggling from taking place at our borders,” Molapo said.

He said the technology would be imple­mented at all borders hence “Makhaleng border is not the only border to ben­efit from the upgrade but we are going to install the same system at all borders throughout the country”.

Immigration Director, ‘Malereko Molefi, said the upgrade came after her depart­ment realised the shortfalls of the manual system which included poor data cap­turing, the capacity to identify prohib­ited persons, inability to properly identify fraudulent travel documents as well as the inefficient control of arrivals and de­parture.

Molefi said under the new system, visi­tors’ passports would be scanned thereby electronically capturing data into a com­puter system.

“The system is going to be advantageous to the country as it will provide detailed and statistical reports of arrivals and de­partures, register arrivals and departure transactions, check travellers against stop list and the proper identification of fraud­ulent documents,” Molefi said.

The computerised system would greatly enhance the reliability of traffic data by eliminating the cumbersome and more error-prone tradition of manually entering information using large volumes of paper­work.

Deputy Minister of Home Affairs ‘Male­bitso Ralebitso and Development Planning Minister, Moeketsi Majoro, also attended the event.

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