A decentralised passport office in Donegal would help ease the current problems faced by the people of the north west, Councillor Michael McMahon has said.
Cllr McMahon has asked Donegal County Council to make a proposal to the Department of Foreign Affairs to seek a local passport office to serve the surrounding six counties.
Cllr McMahon said the office would end the “fiasco” of lengthy delays with the service.
He told the council on Monday: “I’m not here to criticise the workers but nobody seems to know anything about anything in there.
“If you make a phone call you could spend one hour, you could spend a full day, you could spent a week. That is how bad it is.
“I’m suggesting that the regulator gets the finger out, for want of a better word, and does something about this.”
I think it’s time we looked seriously at all these. I am suggesting we bring this into Donegal where it could cater for Sligo, Leitrim, Fermanagh and Derry.
“It’s about time that the department took stock of what is happening.
“It’s too bad that people want to go on a holiday to see their relatives after two and a half years and then they find themselves in this citation.
“I don’t know how they allowed the accumulation of almost 200,000 passports, it’s an unbelievable situation.”
Cllr Donal ‘Mandy’ Kelly added that a passport office in the north west would take the pressure off the head office “especially now with the influx from the six counties coming into the one office in Dublin.”
Cllr McMahon’s motion was passed. He also encouraged people to check their passport expiry dates to avoid losing money on missed holidays.