The Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) yesterday began to admit Ghanaian passengers and dual nationals returning to Ghana on a valid Ghana Card.
This follows the official recognition of the Ghana Card as an International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)-compliant travel document.
Supt. Michael Amoako-Atta, Head of Public Affairs, in a statement issued and copied to the Ghanaian Times in Accra yesterday, said this was because the Ghana Card was to serve as an optional travel document.
Meanwhile, he indicated that until bilateral agreements were signed with other countries, the Ghana card could not be used to travel outside the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) sub-region.
Supt. Amoako-Atta said that Ghanaians who had renounced their Ghanaian citizenship to obtain the citizenship of other countries were not eligible to travel on the Ghana Card, adding that “dual nationals holding the Ghana Card will not require visas to enter Ghana.”
Outlining the entry procedures, he noted that there shall be designated booths at the Kotoka International Airport to process Ghanaian passengers who travel on the Ghana Card into Ghana.
Supt. Amoako-Atta stressed that upon arrival, the identity of the Ghana Card holder would be verified against the National Identity Register (NIR), adding that “once the passenger’s identity has been successfully verified, the passenger is admitted into the country.”
Regarding the departure procedure, the GIS Head of Public Relations said a Ghanaian who entered Ghana with the Ghana Card would be required to show the Ghana Card to the immigration officials at the Immigration Departure Control.
“A passenger who arrives in Ghana with a fraudulently acquired or fake Ghana Card will be denied entry and/or arrested and prosecuted in accordance with applicable laws,” he added.
Supt. Amoako-Atta further said it was an offence under Section 52 of the Immigration Act, 2000 (Act 573) for a person to fraudulently acquire or use a forged or fake travel document, and convicted offenders may be fined and or imprisoned.
BY TIMES REPORTER