- The foreign affairs minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has lamented the continued corruption at the passport office in Accra
- The minister has decided to relieve all staff seconded to the office as part of attempts to clean up the system
- Botchwey has also said there will be an investigation into the conduct of personnel at the passport office in Accra
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Foreign affairs minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has criticised passport office staff over corruption-related activities on its premises.
Botchwey complained about the extortion of applications by workers at the passport office in Accra.
The minister believes the staff at the office work with a cartel of goro boys to frustrate the system.
Though passport services are online, she suspects some workers are hampering it for their own gain.
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As an example, Botchwey said she had heard fees of up to GH¢3,000 paid for passports instead of the maximum GH¢150.
She further relieved staff seconded to the office effective August 21 as part of efforts to sanitise the place.
“Anybody who has been here for more than one year, from Monday on, please do not come back because you have been changed,” she said while addressing the press.
In addition, Botchwey said she wanted all security personnel at the office to be dismissed.
Botchwey further told the press there would be investigations into personnel conduct at the office.
“There are investigations going on, and some names have been mentioned. There’s a cartel of people who are working with people from inside.”
Extra payments at the passport office
YEN.com.gh previously reported such issues at the passport office when a man recounted that he was given the option to wait in a queue or pay a token of GH¢ 85 to be served instantly.
A lady came out to explain that this service may not be as bad as it sounds because it is normal for people to pay for convenience. The man declined the offer made to him by the woman.
Roll out of chip-embedded passport
Ghana is bracing for the roll-out of chip-embedded passports or e-passports before the end of 2023.
Director of Passports Alhaji Mohammed Habid Idris said the e-passports are the way to go for Ghana because of their enhanced security features.
Ghana has since October 2022 been gearing up for the roll-out of the innovative e-passports that have already been introduced in about 150 countries
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