Source: Ghana|Myjoyonline| Abubakar Ibrahim
The cumbersome process of securing a Ghanaian passport is set to end with the launch of the Online Passport Service.
The online passport application service which is expected to ensure delivery of passports within 15 working days for standard applications and 5 working days for express applications.
Speaking at the event Foreign Affairs Minister, Hannah Tetteh, said the online application system would reduce the involvement of middlemen in the passport acquisition process.
Also, the new system will address the issue of typographical errors which slowed the process in the past, she added.
The passport acquisition in Ghana is beset with a lot of problems as applicants go through middlemen who sometime swindle them of huge sums of money without delivering the passport.
There have also been complaints of workers of the Foreign Affairs Ministry who use the inconvenience in the application process to make money from applicants.
The outgoing Foreign Minister observed middlemen play a role as there are some people who are not comfortable to fill the forms by themselves “maybe because they have challenges with understanding what is required of them or their literacy levels are low.”
“Whatever, it is there has been a demand for the services of middlemen and that is why they have been present as part of the process,” adding the Ministries aims to put in place a system which would reduce to the barest minimum the intervention of third parties.
This, she said the introduction of the new service is to ease the process for people who could fill the forms by themselves, provide the necessary information that is required to support their application, apply for their passports and get it issued within the shortest possible time.
“Also, we want to take advantage of technology that is available and more importantly, we wanted to make it faster to be able to acquire a Ghanaian passport,” she explained.