The Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) has began admitting Ghanaians and dual nationals using valid Ghana cards into the country. The Ghana card now serves as an optional travel document following the completion of the system integration efforts between GIS and National Identification Authority (NIA).
The use of the Ghana card follows the official recognition of the Ghana card as an International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) -compliant travel document.
In a press briefing at Kotoka International Airport, the Deputy Head, Management Information Systems (MIS), Superintendent Sheriff Kudjo Karikari indicated that two to three booths have been set aside for verification and processing of passengers returning into the country with the Ghana card. He further indicated that what was being witnessed at the booths was a simple exercise of ensuring the card bearer is a Ghanaian and the information provided is valid.
‘This is something new we have started and so we find passengers presenting the Ghana card with their passport but we believe that over time they will get used to the system’ Supt Karikari said.
Supt. Karikari further briefed that the Ghana card can also be used in place of a passport to travel to any member state of the Economic Community of West African States. (ECOWAS). ‘Until bilateral agreements are signed with other countries, the Ghana card cannot be used for travel outside the Ecowas sub-region,’ he emphasised.
The Head of Public Affairs, GIS on his part, cautioned that persons who arrive with a fake Ghana card will not be allowed entry into the country and will be arrested and prosecuted according to applicable laws.