Ghana Passport Application Goes Digital

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I moved back to Ghana in 2014, and I know firsthand how many systems in the country don’t work. When I needed to renew my son’s Ghana passport, I was not excited at all as I knew the toil it would be. My knowledge of the new online application process was met with an eye roll and silent sucking of teeth. Reluctantly, I went to the Ghana passport service website to see what this newer, better process was about. Essentially you apply online but you will still be required to go in to complete the process, and then again to pick up your passport.

Here I recount my experience with the new electronic Ghana passport service:

You can use mobile money to pay for the passport form or you can pay at bank (you will be given a code to enter into the website). It costs 50 cedis for the regular processing time service and 100 cedis for express. When paying for the passport form you will asked for your phone number and that same mobile number will be used to alert you when the passport is ready, so make sure it’s a number you have access to.

When you sit behind your laptop it’s all pretty straight forward, you just follow the instructions. You will need a scanned copy of a passport picture and other supporting evidence for a passport all scanned – your birth certificate, copy of old passport info page, so get these together before you sit. Once done filling the form, you’ll be allowed to book a date to go to a Passport Application Centre (PAC) near you.

PAC Centre Locations:

Accra          Kinbu Road (Old Ministry of Foreign Affairs Building)
Kumasi     Ministries, Adum behind the Court of Appeal ,PWD (National Service Secretariat)
Takoradi  Ghana Immigration Offices (Within the Regional Coordinating Council Premises)
Suyani       Adjacent to Jubilee Park (shares a wall with the Park)
Ho               Regional Coordinating Council (Shares building with Immigration)
Tamale      Police Park (Old Library Premises)

Photo from HelpInGhana.com

When you’re all done, you will print the form and get it signed by a reference, so make sure you give yourself time to get this reference to sign off on the form when choosing the appointment to go to the PAC. At the PAC they don’t go by the time slot you choose (surprise, surprise…) so I suggest you just get there earlier than your allotted time. Upon submission, applicant’s biometric data will be captured and a picture taken at the PAC. Provided you have all the evidence needed, it will take about 45 minutes when you start to go through all the rooms.

Image from HelpInGhana.com

In less than an hour, you will be informed when to pick up your passport! I paid for express service and was told it would take 3 weeks but got a text message “ready” alert just 10 days after I left! I went back and joined the queue and it took about a half hour for me to get my new passport. It was all very efficient, and I’m happy to have the freedom to be wheels up when I need to be.

 

Written by Ella Agbettor

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