Minority to demand review of passport application fees – Okudzeto Ablakwa

The Minority in Parliament has described as “terrible and disappointing” the decision by the Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Ministry to increase passport application fees.

The Ministry, in a statement on Monday, adjusted the fees for passport applications, raising them from GH¢100 to ¢500 for the 32-page booklet and to ¢644 for the 48-page booklet under the standard service.

For those who want expedited service, they will pay ¢700 for a 32-page booklet and ¢800 for a 48-page booklet.

The new fees were contained in the Ministry’s 2024 Budget estimates document, which has been approved by Parliament’s Subsidiary Legislation Committee.

But the ranking member on the Foreign Affairs Committee of Parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa says his side will demand a review of the fees when the House reconvenes.

“When the House resumes we intend to revisit this matter because my recommendation, I believe is sound and our committee was clear that this should not be done in one single swoop, it should be a gradual approach.

“It is a matter we will revisit. We will summon the Ministers and officials from the Ministry to see what can be done because this is really terrible. It is going to add on to the already excruciating hardship and anguish that Ghanaians are going through,” he said on JoyNews.


In December last year, Foreign Affairs Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey requested Parliament’s Committee on Subsidiary Legislation that the passport application fees be reviewed to allow the ministry to reduce losses in passport booklet printing.

“It is time for Ghanaians to pay realistic prices for passports they acquire to travel beginning next year,” said the Minister.

The Minister also argued that the current fee of $7.7 for the acquisition of a Ghanaian passport was the lowest in the sub-region.

“Ghanaians pay just about GH¢100 for a passport yet to produce one passport booklet it costs GH¢400 which means that for every passport that an applicant acquires, the government has to put in GH¢300 and this is not sustainable,” she added.


Source: Myjoyonline.com


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