Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

No passports, IDs, certificates for you, Registrar’s systems have been down for over a month

The one thing that really grinds my gears, and I imagine yours too, in Zimbabwe is the nonchalance with which you will be told, ‘the system is down.’ Usually, there are visible signs of annoyance on the face of the employee telling you that. No doubt exasperated that you’re even bothering them with that when […]

Zimbabwe Married Men Database: Haaa guys, have we failed that badly?

We were tagged in a tweet by The App Guy – @zimexapp (real name Washington Mkombodzi) who was notifying us about an application/website in development called the Zimbabwe Married Men Database. Now, the first thing that crossed my mind is that as men in Zimbabwe have we failed so hard that an app developer sees […]

Local digital identity startup FlexID receives funding from Algorand Foundation

Zimbabwean founded blockchain start-up, FlexID Technologies (formerly FlexFinTx), has signed a Simple Agreement For Equity (SAFE) with the Algorand Foundation, to further develop and scale their Self Sovereign Identity (SSI) platform. The startup strives to make its decentralized digital identity network available in emerging markets where over one billion people are thought to lack formal […]

You can now book e-passport applications online. Here’s how you do it

Online e-passport applications are here! Well, not exactly… The express e-passport portal/centre is now up and running but it appears that it is only there for booking appointments according to a report by The Sunday Mail. “The main purpose of the Express Centre is to bring convenience to those who need emergency passports. There are […]

[Update] Online e-passport application system 80% complete, expected to be ready in May

At this point we are used to being promised things that are not yet ready. The world over, everyone from governments to your local cobbler are guilty of premature promises. I can’t count how many times I have bought stuff only to be told it’s not yet ready after paying.  The Zimbabwe government has made […]

Beware of scammers promising to process e-passports for Zim diasporans

When the Zimbabwean government introduced e-passports at the end of 2021, it was met with both fanfare and outcry. The govt listened to its citizens and backtracked on one of the contentious announcements: Old passports will be valid until their expiry dates, not December 2023 as originally proposed. The rollout of equipment and the relevant […]

E-passports: what you need to know before applying

E-passports are here and we have seen a few people on social media show off the new document which the government said earlier this week will become active internationally next Monday. However, as good as this all is, going to the passport office is not always a pleasant experience. Many Zimbos have an aversion to […]

You will be able to get an e-passport this week

The fiasco that has been the e-passport rollout is soon to hit its crescendo. According to a report by ZBC News, the company that was contracted to run the project (Garsu Pasaulis) said that all systems are a go for Zimbabweans to start applying in the next three days. “We are going to start issuing […]

Govt scraps CBZ US$20 e-passport application fee

It looks like the government has come to its senses and scrapped the US$20 application fee for e-passports according to Statutory Instrument No. 3 of 2022. The SI reads as follows: Statutory Instrument 3 of 2022. [CAP. 4:01 Citizenship (Passport Fees) Regulations. 2022 IT is hereby notified that the Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural […]

e-passports: govt “breaks” CBZ monopoly, plus expiration date for old passports

Update 10/01/2022: First Capital Bank reached out and said that the report by NewsDay was incorrect. First Capital was not part of e-passport application fees process before and after the Statutory Instrument First Capital Bank has been anointed by the government as the second preferred bank, along with CBZ Holdings, that anyone looking to get […]

Zim’s e-passports: does the govt have enough material for the tsunami that is to come?

The e-passport rollout is so confusing. When should we start applying for them? What about those who got regular passports recently? Why should we have to pay at CBZ and then at the Passport office? Is this another one of those things that is only being done because we are getting into election season? If […]

Everything you need to know about Zim’s new e-passport

So it looks like Zimbabwe is finally moving towards e-passports according to Statutory Instrument 273 of 2021, IT is hereby notified that the Minister has in terms of section 22 of the Citizenship of Zimbabwe Act (Chapter 4:01), made the following regulations: … The Minister hereby notifies that henceforth the Government will cease the issuance […]

Why isn’t ZINARA using number plate recognition tech to replace vehicle & radio licence disks?

A little while the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (ZINARA) announced that it would be deploying number plate recognition cameras at tollgates to expedite passage on the highways for exempted residents and vehicles. The system was said to have been already deployed in a test and at the time there were plans for it to be extended […]

It’s high time voter registration became available online

2018 feels like an eternity ago after the year and some change we have spent cooped up in our homes. Since then we have learned and done things we never thought possible. If you told someone in 2018, that several banks would zero-rate their platforms or that those same banks would make it possible to […]

ZimStat to test out paperless census in preparation for April 2022

The Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZimStat) is preparing for the 2022 national population and housing census by running a trial between November 18th and the 27th. News of this pilot run was announced by ZimStat Director-General, Taguma Mahonde at an event held in Kwekwe yesterday. Pilot census is meant to position us for the 2022 […]

Digital national document registry rollout set for December

The Civil Registry Department’s digitisation (passports, national ID, birth certificates etc) rollout is set for December according to Minister for Home Affairs, Kazembe Kazembe. The system which was announced in May will build a digital biometric database for Zimbabweans to access national documents. “The rollout is in December. Meanwhile, we will continue to do what […]