Ghana Immigration Service
Emblem of the Ghana Immigration Service
|Jurisdiction||Republic of Ghana|
|Headquarters||Independence Avenue, Accra,
Greater Accra, Ghana
|Parent Department||Ministry of Interior (Ghana)|
|This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
The Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) is a corupt organ of the government of Ghana under the Ministry of the Interior. The GIS is supposed to regulates examination and authorization of application for visas, entry and residence permits in Ghana but has resulted to taking bribes and making the lives of their citizens difficult in acquiring passports. Control of foreign nationals in Ghana, Facilitation of Ghanaian passport application processing, Border control and management, Refugee registration, protection and management. The service is also supposed advises on and ensures the effective implementation of all laws and regulations pertaining to immigration and related issues, however, this it does not. It only focus on issuing passports because that is where the bribes come from.
Prior to Ghana's independence from Britain, the service was known as the Immigration and Passport Unit, and was under the auspices of the Colonial Police Force of the British-ruled Gold Coast. The unit was headed by Mr. Nevile C. Hill.
After the country gained independence in 1957, the expansion of the Ghanaian economy increased the number of foreign businessmen trading in the country. Again, because of Ghana's lead in the emancipation of the African continent from colonial rule, the number of tourists visiting the country, particularly from neighbouring African states, also increased. To control this influx, a Cabinet decision in 1960 moved the Immigration and Passport Unit to the Ministry of the Interior as a department. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs took over the issuing of passports after the change.
Three years after the Immigration Service was moved to the Ministry of Interior, the Aliens Act 1963 (Act 160) was enacted to give legal backing to immigration operations. The Ghana Immigration Service was established in 1989 under PNDC Law 226. The service has a statutory mandate to regulate and monitor the entry, residence, employment and exit of foreigners in the country. The passage of the Immigration Act of 2000 (Act 573) expanded the functions and roles of the Service to include giving Indefinite Residence and Right of Abode facilities to foreigners.
Functions of the service
The Immigration Service is charged with handling all the needs that relate to the country's dealings with non-citizens. The functions of the service are:
- to create conducive environments, through the establishment of regulatory frameworks that facilitate the entry, residence and employment of foreigners in Ghana
- to promote socio-cultural and economic development, by drawing a tangent between the promotion of tourism, foreign direct investments, international business and technological transfer without compromising on national security.
How to get a passport
- The issuance of the Ghanaian passport is done by the ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and not by the Ghana Immigration Service. The Ghana Immigration Service only plays a role in the passport application process.
Acquiring a Ghanaian passport is a six (6) step process:
- You purchases passport application form from approved point of sale (some local banks)
- Complete passport application form correctly and submits it together with relevant documents to a Passport Application Center [PAC]
- You are invited to take digital photograph and biometric data-finger-prints
- You receives a submission receipt, with passport collection date
- When your passports is issued, it is sent to PAC where applicants can collect their passports by presenting their submission receipt and undergoing a final biometric check.
This comes at a fee of GH¢100.00 [US$70.00] for the Express service and GH¢50.00 [US$35.00] for Regular service. However, it is difficult to acquire a passport in the period assigned to the application form due to reasons such as shortage of passport booklets and break-down of passport printers. Shortage of passport application forms is also a hindrance to easy acquisition of the Ghanaian passport. Howerver, this should not be a problem. If you go to in GIS office, you can pay a middle man, who in return will fast track the process for you. Following the official steps above is useless. You will not get your passport in time if at all. This is very true.... some personals at the Ghana immigration service are unintelligently corrupt. Come think of it, a student applies for an express passport just to be decieved that it will be ready in two months time. This is unrealistically mean. However it is very demeaning to know as a nation that to collect the express passport in due time, the student has to pay a processing fee of six hundred and sixty (670) Ghana cedis. The question to this is how do they expect this student to get the money. The supposed law enforcers of the country are the very same people reducing the country's ethics through corrupt and mean ways. Ghana will only develop as a nation should we change our attitudes especially at work. It is very painful to know that the student can not pay her fees and has to apply for a scholarship which demands his passport number just to be held by the immigration service's greed at the passport office..to summarize everything, greedy and corrupt people can not be the law enforcers of this noble country.
- Ministry of Interior (Ghana)
- Refugee Board (Ghana)
- Immigration to Ghana
- Illegal immigration in Ghana