The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration has strongly dismissed claims by the United States of America that Ghana’s mission in US is failing to issue travel documents for some illegal immigrants awaiting deportation.
The US government on Wednesday threatened to impose visa restrictions on Ghanaian citizens over government’s failure to issue documents for the deportation of some Ghanaians.
According to the US government, the West African nation has not been proactive in issuing travel documents to Ghanaians awaiting deportation in the USA hence the threat.
“In December 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) identified Ghana as being at risk of non-compliance on removals of those under deportation orders. Since then, the U.S. government has repeatedly engaged the Government of Ghana in both Washington, D.C., and Accra and has urged the government to abide by its international obligations and issue the necessary travel documents so that Ghanaians under deportation orders may depart the United States on commercial flights.
“If Ghana fails to comply with international obligations regarding the issuance of travel documents, the United States may be forced to begin implementing visa restrictions on Ghana, in accordance with U.S. law,” the US Embassy in Accra said in a statement Wednesday.
But a statement issued Friday by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that it has already urged the US government to prove that the illegal immigrants awaiting deportation are Ghanaians.
Parts of the statement read, “It has come to the attention of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration that a recent statement issued by the Public Affairs Section of the Embassy of the United States of America in Ghana on 20th June, 2018, sought to give the impression that the Government of Ghana was failing to meet its obligations under the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), by not speeding up the issuance of travel documents to persons identified as illegal immigrants who are awaiting deportation to Ghana.
“The Ministry wishes to place on record that it continues to engage its Missions in the United States of America on the matter and has already communicated their concerns to the U.S Embassy in Ghana about the need to do due diligence and establish the nationalities of the deportees before they are issued with travel documents.
“In the spirit of cooperation, therefore, the Ghana Missions have the obligation to ensure that the right processes are followed to verify the identities of subjects for deportation, in order to avert challenges with the Ghana Immigration Service upon the arrival of the latter.”