Ghana News & Trends

If you don’t need a passport and can’t afford it, please don’t get one- Minister of Foreign Affairs

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Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, has advised Ghanaians who cannot afford a passport to avoid applying for one, emphasizing that passports are no longer the primary form of identity.

Speaking to media, she emphasized the efficiency of the national identity system as the primary method of identification.

Ms Botchwey added, “Today, as we speak, we have National Identification, which is very effective, so that is our primary source of identification is no longer a passport.

“Even those who have a national ID can enter the country with it.” So, I’m respectfully urging Ghanaians that, if you don’t need a passport and can’t afford it, please don’t get one since it’s no longer your primary form of identity,” she said.

She expressed worry over the government’s subsidy for passport applications and cautioned that if the subsidy persists, the quality of services supplied to Ghanaians may decline.

“If the government is subsidising heavily, it’s difficult to provide any good services to Ghanaians,” she went on to say.

She also promised to cooperate with Parliament if passport fees are reviewed, emphasizing that fee modifications are not intended to financially harm residents.

The Ministry has announced fee hikes for passport services beginning April 1, 2024, in accordance with the 2023 Fees and Charges rules, L.I. 2481.

The processing charge for an expedited 48-page passport is now GHS800, while a 32-page application is GHS700.

She stated, “Fees come from the Parliament of Ghana. We make a presentation to them; we give them the bare facts of what it is. Parliament is aware of this, and these charges came from Parliament. If Parliament decides, we should go back. We will have to look at it. It is Parliament that has decided, and we will go by it.”

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