Executive Secretary to the Vice President, Augustine Yaw Blay has reiterated that the National Identification Card (GhanaCard) has met all the requirements for an electronic passport.
According to him, this move places Ghana at a vantage point in ongoing plans towards the worldwide implementation of E-visas.
Government had earlier announced that it had been officially presented with the certificate to make the Ghana Card an e-passport to be accepted at 44,000 airports across the globe.
This means the Ghana Card, which is a unique biometric identification card, will be accepted as an e-passport in 197 borders globally and 44,000 airports in the world.
However, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) clarified that it was not its responsibility to “certify the use of a state’s identity card for international travel in place of a passport.”
“Any decision to accept such alternative travel identity document is made by the receiving state itself,” ICAO tweeted.
But speaking on The Probe on Sunday, Mr Blay explained that the February 9 launch was not to digitalise visas but to rather trigger the needed infrastructure to easily transition into the E-Visa plans once it is launched by ICAO in the near future.
“The GhanaCard has a chip, our passport today doesn’t have the chip so it doesn’t qualify as an e-passport. So GhanaCard as it stands has the E-passport embedded in it.
“And on February 9, 2022, ICAO said the chip that we have in our GhanaCard has met the standard for e-passport. So you can store information on it, they have tested it and validated it,” he told Emefa Apawu.
For now, the card will allow card-bearing Ghanaians to enter the country from across the world without necessarily showing the booklet version of the passport.
“The Ghana Airports Company Limited, as a result of ICAO now agreeing and approving our card as an e-passport complaint, now they have [GACL] issued out statements to all these airline companies and airport saying that people can now come to Ghana with the GhanaCard.”