Minister of Safety and Security (Rtd) Major-General Charles Namoloh on Friday said that it will now take only two weeks to get a certificate of conduct, instead of the usual six months.
Namoloh noted that the nation has been bemoaning the waiting period for the issuance of police conduct certificates, which takes up to six months in many cases.
To ease matters and as an extension of the E-Police eco-system, the Ministry of Safety and Security has come up with the NamPol Automated Biometric Identification System, which has been developed at a cost of N$40 million.
It consists of a fingerprint identification system (AFIS) and the automated facial recognition system (AFRS), which enable the system to scan and detect if a person has a criminal record in less than five minutes.
The system is linked to a unique number for each citizen and will for now only be operational in Windhoek, although plans are afoot to roll it out countrywide by the end of this year.
The technology is not only limited to police conduct certificates, but is also integrated with case docket management, movement control and mortuary databases in addition to other uses.
“Criminal records of suspects are compared by the system within minutes for matching and will be linked to the case docket for court proceedings,” said the minister.
“The Namibian Police Force has shown what technology can achieve by embracing digitized operations.”
“The automated biometric identification which is launched today is a clear testimony of the ingenuity and forethought of the Ministry of Safety and Security and the Namibian Police Force in embracing the use of technology in a quest to improve operational efficiency and effectiveness in law enforcement,” he said at the official launch of NamPol’s Automated Biometric Identification System (N-ABIS) at a local hotel.
He further said the Ministry of Safety and Security is committed to implementing the e-governance policy and strategy in order to improve service delivery. “We have successfully launched the project called E-Policing eco-system in 2010 at a cost of N$22 million,” Namoloh stated.
At the same event the chief of the police, Inspector-General Sebastian Ndeitunga said that NamPol acknowledges the fact that technology is rapidly changing, fuelled primarily by innovation and ever-changing customer requirements.
“The needs of the Namibian Police Force – as a law enforcement agency – are no different. As the tools available to criminal entities continue to evolve, so do the needs of law enforcement agencies worldwide, in pursuit of satisfying the demands for increased operational efficiency and process improvement.”
According to Ndeitunga, the pronouncement of the E-governance system provided a platform from which stakeholders could collaborate to develop the strategic action plan to offer online government services on a 24/7 basis through a ‘one-stop shop’ for the benefit of citizens, businesses, government institutions and visitors.
He said the police launched the electronic policing system four years ago, consisting of 16 databases covering the areas of case docket, crime statistics and movement, crime intelligence, geo-policing, internal investigations, motor vehicle clearance certificates, organised crime, criminal records, human resources, fleet, procurement, policy planning, mortuary, training, and development of firearms management.