Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has announced that from the first quarter of 2022, the Ghana Card will be globally recognised as an e-passport.
He has indicated that the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has duly accepted the usage of the cards as e-passport from the second quarter of 2022.
He announced this while addressing an audience at Ashesi University.
Dubbed ‘Bawumia Speaks’, the event was themed ‘Transforming An Economy Through Digitalisation: The Ghana Story’.
According to the Vice President, Wednesday, October 13, 2021 marked a milestone for Ghana as the country was officially received as the 79th member of ICAO.
He said with this move, the country’s major identification document produced by the National Identification Authority (NIA) will be allowed as a source of identification – in this case an e-passport – for international travels.
“This means that by the end of the first quarter next year, the Ghana Card will be recognised globally as an e-passport,” he stressed, adding: “When this happens, holders of the Ghana Card will be allowed to board any flight to Ghana.”
Dr Bawumia, who was the Deputy Governor of the Bank of Governor until 2008, said Ghanaians in the diaspora will then need no visas to travel to Ghana.
“Therefore, the good news to diasporan Ghanaians is that when the Ghana Immigration Service is linked to the NIA architecture, diasporan Ghanaians who hold the Ghana Card should not have to obtain visas to travel to Ghana.
“We expect this to be operational by the end of the first quarter of next year.
“Ghana is one of the few countries in the world where the national ID card is also an e-passport.”
So far, over 15 million Ghanaians have been enrolled on the Ghana Card with a target of the government to cover most of the population by the end of 2022.
The Ghana Card has become the sole document for the ongoing nationwide SIM card registration exercise, which ends in March 2022.
“The issuance of the Ghana Card has provided Ghana with a database that will be the anchor for all transactions in the future, providing unique identity to all individuals.”
By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana