Ayorkor Botchwey defends 400% passport fee increment

Source The Ghana Report

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has defended the ministry’s 400% increment in passport application fees.

This comes after some Ghanaians kicked against the new fee increase, describing it as insensitive and unfair.

However, according to the minister, this move aims to improve the operations at the passport office to provide better services for applicants.

She explains that the government spends GH¢400 on each passport.

She added that applicants only pay GH₵100, while the state subsidizes GH¢300.

This, she said, was negatively affecting their output.

“Parliament has had to agree to increase the cost of passports. It’s not because we want to impose a financial burden on Ghanaians.

“No, it’s just because we need to have applicants pay the realistic fees so that we, in turn, can also provide them with a good service with a good experience when they come looking or looking to procure passports,” the minister said.

The minister further urged Ghanaians who do not urgently need passports to stop procuring them as they are no longer the primary source of identification.

“I’m asking humbly, Ghanaians, that please, if you do not need a passport and because you cannot afford it, please, humbly, I’m asking you not to go for a passport because it’s no longer your primary source of identification,” she appealed.

On April 1, 2024, the ministry announced an upward adjustment in its passport application fees.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration wishes to inform its valued clients that, in accordance with the fees and charges (Miscellaneous Provisions) Regulations, 2023 (L.I 2481).

“There will be an adjustment in the fees and charges for all services provided by the ministry. The adjustment will take effect from Monday, 1st April 2024,” a statement from the ministry said.

Given that, the processing fee for an expedited 48-page passport now costs GH₵800, while the 32-page application costs GH₵700.

A standard application for 32 pages costs GH₵ 500.00, while a standard application for 48 pages is GH₵ 644.00.

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