President Akufo-Addo has inaugurated the new Passport Head Office at Ridge in Accra. The inauguration is considered another huge step forward in giving a face-lift to passport acquisition in the country, with the introduction of several reforms including extending the expiry period for passports from 5 to 10 years and digitising passport applications.
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo described the new edifice as “appropriate for the kind of services rendered there”.
He, therefore, admonished officials working there to take proper care of the facility and ensure it is put into judicious use.
“I think we can all agree that today that appropriate accommodation for the passport office can be obtained. At long last, we now have a means of obtaining a passport that can be done in an objective transparent manner. It can no longer be associated with no kind of strange developments,” the President stated.
The Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, said the commissioning was in fulfillment of President Akufo-Addo’s promise to transform the operations of the Passport office.
She commended President Akufo-Addo for fulfilling his promise to transform the operations of the Passport office.
“The commissioning of this Passport Head Office is a historic moment for passport administration in Ghana. What we are witnessing today, is the culmination of positive intervention and reforms undertaken by the Akufo-Addo led Government to significantly transform the operations of the application system, thereby phasing out the manual application system, which hitherto was the norm.”
The newly commissioned Passport Head Office, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey said, is a three level purpose-built edifice, with ancillary facilities such as a meeting room, cafeteria for staff, and a well-structured records/archival room among others.
She cautioned the public against engaging in fraudulent activities which might undermine the integrity of the passport.
“Let me at this juncture touch on an important issue, which I believe is of concern to all well-meaning Ghanaians. This has to do with the integrity and security of the Ghanaian passport.”
“It is a civic responsibility to guard the passport application process and not yield it to unscrupulous people to undermine the integrity of our passports,” the Foreign Minister noted.
Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey says the Ministry has extended biometric passport services to Ghana’s Diplomatic Missions abroad to make passport acquisition easier for Ghanaians in the Diaspora.
Story by Nathaniel Nartey.