BANGKOK, March 12 – The Foreign Ministry has asserted that there is no queue fixing for the passport application process, urging the public not to panic as passport issuance can definitely cope with the demand.
Department of Consular Affairs director general Thongchai Chasawath gave his assurance after complaints were spread on social media calling for the Department of Consular Affairs to clarify reports that some applicants hired stand-ins to line up for them at the Passport Office in Bang Na.
Mr Thongchai said that the department acknowledged the complaint but its rented the office area and the queuing extends outside the office.
He said the building opens at 6.30am and queueing tickets are available then. There is no fixing of the queue.
Passport officials note the ID card numbers of people waiting in the queue and they re-check the numerical order as applicants’ arrive at the counter.
Many passport applicants have complained about the inconvenience as the long queue has created a new “hired to queue” business, forcing passport applicants to pay more for the process.
Mr Thongchai has also given assurances that Thai passports are produced with the second highest standard of safety in Asia after Hong Kong. He said the Thai passport is considered a forgery-proof passport with 37 spots, from 50 spots under the Department of Aviation’s standard, to check the forgery.