Following a number of incidents that could pass as terror threats in the country, it seems the government is fast-tracking the process of reviewing visa application processes.
The Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery, in a meeting with officials from the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) said that the growing terrorist threats in neighbouring countries were an indication of the crucial role the GIS had to play as the first line of defence.
The Minister, therefore, called on the GIS to step-up its role in intelligence gathering and the patrolling of the borders of the country.
In addition to that, he indicated that plans are in place to make the issuance of visas at Ghana’s Diplomatic Missions abroad the sole responsibility of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS).
Currently, officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration are in charge of issuing visas.
The Minister indicated that both the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and the Interior had concluded decisions on the approach, and were working on the rollout.
The successful implementation of this decision, he said, would be in fulfilment of the Immigration Service Act 908 of 2016.
To the Minister, the GIS has the functional capacity and technical expertise to provide seamless visa services including detection of fake travel documents, among others. “Certainly, the issuance of visas at Missions abroad by an immigration body has been the standard practice across the globe,” he stated.
Hon. Dery commended the GIS for the improvement in relationship and strengthening of collaboration with sister security agencies such as the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority and the Ghana Police Service. This, he said, would engender effective intelligence sharing among the security agencies to enhance the provision of security in the country.
Hopefully, this new measure can help the country get rid of people who are unfit to emigrate into the country.