Togo creates online platform for visa issuance

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The Togolese government says it has completed an electronic visa issuance system (e-Visa) called ‘Togo VOYAGE‘.

In a statement on Monday, the West African country said the new system would allow applicants to complete the application process (including submission of the application, payment, and withdrawal of the e-Visa) electronically without needing to visit an immigration office or embassy in person.

It added that the platform would also allow incoming and outgoing travellers to complete all the necessary health formalities to ensure safe travel, including paying for PCR tests for unvaccinated travellers, which are mandatory on departure and arrival in Togo.

“The intuitive new platform, available in French and English, offers many features such as a “Visa Wizard” which enables incoming travellers to quickly determine whether they need a visa to travel to Togo,” the statement reads.

“It allows travellers to update their information by creating a personal account, consequently saving their personal information such as names, contact details, passport numbers, etc., to avoid refilling all their information for each trip they organise.

“Currently, the platform and its supporting mechanism are only deployed at the air borders.

“However, the government plans to extend it to land and sea borders throughout the year 2022. The project is carried out by the Togo Digital Agency (Agence Togo Digital, ATD), which has been designated as a ‘catalyst for digital transformation in public administration’ in the country.”

According to the government, the development makes Togo the first country to fully integrate their online visa and immigration application processes with their COVID-19-related policies under a single platform.

Commenting on the e-Visa platform, Cina Lawson, Togo’s minister of digital economy and transformation, said, “Once again, Togo has proven to be an innovator in the field of digitisation on the continent and globally.”

“As we ambition to become a digital service hub and an international centre for innovation and expertise we are modernising all sectors of our economy, and launching Voyage Togo is one more bold step toward that.”

In his remarks, Damehame Yark, the country’s minister of security and civil protection, said the new platform would help enhance security at the borders as it creates a unique database for entry and exit of the territory.

“I am pleased with the Voyage Togo platform because it is revolutionising our work methods,” he said.

“Today, we have access to a unique and virtual database of travellers coming in and moving out of the country, making it a hundred times faster to process and allowing our national security services to deliver more efficiently.”

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