Four foreigners facing trial for acquiring Ghanaian Passport - Foreign Affairs Minister reveals
| Updated Oct 26, 2017 at 3:32pm
The Minister, responsible for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayokor Botchway has disclosed that some foreigners who have acquired Ghanaian passport through illegal means are currently facing the law.
According to her, it is an undeniable fact that, a few foreigners have attempted to acquire the Ghanaian passport, stressing that, "...quite a few have succeeded in acquiring same through dubious means over the years".
Responding to a parliamentary question by MP for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, on what measures the Ministry is putting in place to prevent non-Ghanaian citizens from acquiring Ghanaian passport, the Sector Minister said, the passport office is continuously embarking on various measures aimed at ensuring that only bonafide citizens of Ghana are issued with Ghana's passport.
She noted that, "a significant and most important measure in this regard, is through rigorous physical verification of prospective applicants as well as their citizenship documents by the security agencies at the Passport Office, by the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI), Defence Intelligence Unit of the Ghana Armed Forces, National Security Council Secretariat, the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) and the Births and Deaths Registry".
The Foreign Minister mentioned on the floor that, these agencies currently working in tandem with the Passport Office, have deployed trained officers at all Passport Application Centres (PACs) in Ghana who have been tasked to physically verify every single applicant, interrogate applicants to ascertain nationality and verify all documents presented for the purpose of acquiring a Ghanaian passport before recommending applicants for approval by a Director at the PACs.
Currently, there are about 4 individuals at various stages of prosecution at the Court. She told the MPs.
"Since it is a crime against the State for a foreigner to acquire or attempt to acquire a Ghanaian passport, the Passport Office, in collaboration with the Ghana Police, actively and frequently effect the arrest and prosecution of suspected foreigners who may attempt to acquire our passport".
Story: Francis Edzorna Mensah