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Cameroon building Digital Transformation Center to manage digital consular services

Impact Palmarès CEO says project will be delivered within 12 months
Cameroon building Digital Transformation Center to manage digital consular services

As part of a process launched last year by the government of Cameroon to modernize its consular services including the issuance of biometric visas, the country is now building what it calls a “Digital Transformation Center” of the Ministry of External Relations.

The foundation stone for the ultra-modern structure was laid early this week in Yaounde in a ceremony presided at by External Relations Minister, Lejeune Mbella Mbella.

The project constitutes phase II of a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) deal which the government sealed with Cote d’Ivoire-based security and identity solutions company, Impact Palmarès R&D SAS, in April 2022.

Apart from supplying the technology for the digital visa system, the firm will build the Digital Transformation Center, operate and maintain it for the period of their contract, before handing it over to the government. The two parties are bound by a contract that is expected to run until at least 2032.

According to Mbella Mbella, the flag-off ceremony of the Digital Transformation Center construction project underlines the commitment of the government to pursuing the digitalization and modernization process of Cameroon’s consular services. This, he said, is part of broader actions to streamline the way the country’s diplomatic machinery functions.

Among other things, the Center, upon completion, will provide a data storage facility for the processing and management of all consular services data, plus other important information of the Ministry of External Relations.

The CEO of Impact Palmarès R&D SAS, Giresse Justin Tella, said his company will deliver the project on budget and deadline within 12 months. He said the project will capitalize on the success they have so far achieved with the issuance of biometric visas in the last year.

Cameroon launched the issuance of biometric visas in early May last year. Not long after it was launched, users reported problems with using the portal. The service turns one year at the end of this month.

This week, the Director of Communication, Documentation and Diplomatic Archives at the Ministry of External Relations, Jean Patrice Koe Jr., told state-owned Cameroon Tribune newspaper that between April 30, 2023 and March 30, 2024, a total of 157,668 biometric visas were issued to people visiting Cameroon.

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