Monday, January 07, 2008

Immigration vs National Registration

I had the following mission objectives today:

Primary Objective: To renew passport - to be completed at all cost by today!
Secondary Objective: To change MyKad/NRIC home address so I can vote in my own constitution (more on that later).

As most mission would go, the primary objective usually takes about 80% of the effort, and "by the way" 20% effort would be devoted to the secondary.

Since I would out that JPN (National Registration Department) is next to the Immigration Department in Wangsa Maju, I decided that the secondary objective should be very much within grasp.

Such irony.

To start off, let me explain why I chose Wangsa Maju branch. It's mainly due to Patrick Teoh fantastic experience (, so might as well follow la. If it's good enough for the big man, shouldn't be an issue to me.

Anyway, reached there by 10:30am, took my form at Counter 1, found out that I forgot to photocopy my MyKad/NRIC, walked next door (where there are plenty instant passport photo and photocopy kiosks). Nice lady in the kiosk even had a stool and table and walked me thru the form.

10:40am, walked back to Counter 1, got a number, sat down for 5 minutes, and my number was called! The officer was a energetic man, make some cute comment about my picture and the fact that I am born in Brunei (I always get that rubbings anywhere I go....), then quickly processed my form under 5 minutes. Told me to wait for my number to be called again for payment.

11:00am, payment time at Counter 7 or 8. Then nice lady asked me to wait for around an hour to be called to collection Counters 17 and 18.

Looked at the board, my number was around 20 away from being called to collection. Hmm. 1 hour? Can ar.

Went out to mamak, had a very quick roti telur and Milo ais, and came back around 11:20am. Checked the board, only 3 numbers away! 5 mins later, my number was called, and new passport was in possession!

Wow! I am *very* impressed! That's an hour from tip to toe! And its not like that the place was stone quiet as well, there were quite a bit of people around, and seats were 70% full.

Anyway, next door, JPN, the story was way different. I took a number, which was like 40 numbers away, and I sat there for 10 mins, NOT EVEN A SINGLE DIGIT moved! Hmm.. that's not good. Sure a buzz killer compared to the service level that I got few minutes back.

Then I realized something else, for all MyKad/NRIC related operations, I always have to go back for a second trip to collect. OK, out I go, and back to nearest JPN to my place, which is Komplex Desa Kepong.

Go there around 12pm, took a number, which was again 40 odd numbers away, and was told that I needed some official documents to prove my resident address (i.e electricity bill). She told me don't bother to come back until after 2pm...Hmm.. WTF?

Went home, got the documents, went back at 2pm. Checked the numbers...WTF (again?), still 40 odd number away? My heart sank. This is not going well. Waited until 3pm, only 5 numbers crawled by. Irked, I went out to had a walk and some light food. Came back 30 minutes later, still around 20 odd number away.

My turn finally came about 4:30pm, and greeted by a mumbling auntie that keep saying that "40 mins from killing time...". (WTF...). On we go. Finger print scan, failed again. Right finger, failed. With a stern look, she told me.... "I would need to detain you for trying to fake Johnathen You have wait a little bit longer than usual, about a month plus". Ushered to take a new digital photo (another queue...sigh), and was released.

Came out around 5pm. That's almost 3 hours man.

Anyway, here is my low down of these departments:

Immigration JPN
Energetic, diverse crowd. Team work can be seen. Old, mainly nearing retirement age Malay ladies.
Fast back end processing, immediate result. Got smart chip inside the passport also ma. A month just for a card?
Fully manned counters. Only 4 out of 10 counters manned.
In uniform. Professional attitude. Very casual clothing. Laid back attitude.
Systematic. Counter 1 = Form/Query, Counter 7+8=Payment, Counter 17+18=Collection. Very confusing. Counter 4 for query? (long queue somemore...) No number call back, have to listen to name calling.
Serve all policy. "We are out of numbers for the day, come back tomorrow." Happened about 3:30pm, and many people was turned away.
Good/minimum queue number system. 1xx and 5xx. Weird system. 1xx, 0xx, 6xx, 7xx, 9xx
Consistent progress. Very easy to calculate ETA. Unpredictable. Numbers were crawling from 2-3pm, then sped up around 3:30pm, and flying from 4pm onwards.

By the way, when I went to Metro Prima Kepong's Post Office to update my voting constitution number, and here is what I got...


214 in front of me.... But at least they are opened until 9pm...

No comments: