Sunday, June 16, 2024

Ghana to rollout door-to-door passport delivery service

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration says it will introduce a door-to-door passport delivery service to enhance passport acquisition.

The Ministry said the move formed part of strategic measures to improve service delivery and to address challenges applicants faced.

Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, the sector Minister, disclosed this at the inauguration of the Ministry’s Ministerial Advisory Board in Accra on Friday.

“We will upgrade our biometric passports into chip-embedded passports. We will introduce machine-readable visa stickers, and door-to-door passport delivery service to applicants when required,” she said.

Passport acquisition in the country has been a nightmare for applicants over the years with some having to wait for months to access the document.

Though the Ministry has introduced an online passport application service, the challenge has not been completely resolved as applicants are required to visit designated passport offices after completing the online procedure for their biometric details to be captured.

Ms Botchwey said one of the Ministry’s strategic goals was to enhance Ghana’s image and influence abroad and that the Ministry would improve service delivery to Ghanaians and foreigners, renovate, build or purchase befitting landed properties to enhance its image abroad.

She said the promotion of regional peace and security, and multilateral relations, were among the Ministry’s priority arrears for the next four years.

“As Chairman of ECOWAS, Ghana will address conflict situations in West Africa, specifically Mali and Guinea and also in the Sahel,” she stated.

The establishment of the Ministerial Advisory Board is in accordance with Section 39 of the Civil Service Law 1993, PNDC Law 327.

The Board is responsible for advising the Ministry at the highest level for effective performance and decision-making.

The Board is chaired by Ms Botchwey, with her two Deputies – Mr Kwaku Apratwum-Sarpong, and Mr Thomas Mbomba.

Other members of the Board are: Mr Brian Acheampong, Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Foreign Affairs; Mrs Abena Osei -Asare, Deputy Minister of Finance;  Mr Albert Kan Dapaah, Minister of National Security; Mr Yoofi Grant, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre; Dr Audery Gadzekpo, a former Dean of the School of Information and Communication Studies at the University of Ghana, and  Dr Emmanuel Akwetey, the Executive Director of the Institute for Democratic Governance.

Ms Botchwey said the Board would advise the Minister on policies and operational strategies and help to promote constant interaction between the Ministry and its stakeholders.

She commended members of the previous Board for their service to the Ministry and the country and expressed confidence that the new Board would assist the Ministry to effectively discharge its mandate.

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