Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration has leveraged the boundless limits of technology to enhance the efficiency of passport operations in general for improved service delivery.

This was revealed by Foreign Affairs Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey on the occasion of the commissioning of the central regional passport application center on Friday.

She said the ministry adopted government’s digitization agenda by automating the process of acquiring passports through the online application system, an appointment-based system, in which an applicant has the liberty to select a center of choice and a time convenient to the applicant.

It is a departure from the old manual application system, which was beset with challenges ranging from overcrowding at PACs and improper completion of forms to interference of middlemen.

The new system process ensures orderliness at the PACs, since they will only attend to applicants whose appointments are due for processing. Flexibility and transparency in service delivery are additional benefits of the online application system.

“With the official opening of this Center, residents of this Region can now apply for passport here in Cape Coast without traveling to Takoradi or Accra for such service,” Ayorkor Botchwey said. “Therefore, citizens of Cape Coast and its environs from today will enjoy the fruits of passport operations at their doorstep and its associated benefits, which were hitherto absent from this beautiful and vibrant region.”

She added: “It is also envisaged that the establishment of a Passport Application Center in Cape Coast would unleash more opportunities in the supply chain where the youth and school leavers can take advantage and set up their own small businesses.

“I urge the residents to make good use of the center, cooperate with the officers and also provide useful feedback to the office to enable the Passport office to improve its service delivery. I have every confidence that the officer-in-charge and staff stationed in this PAC will deliver efficient and quality service to applicants. While you assert your authority in the discharge of your duties, I urge you to be respectful of all who come your way to seek the services of this office.

“At this juncture, I would like to express profound appreciation to all stakeholders and partners of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration who worked diligently up to this point. Special mention must be made of the Regional Minister Kwamena Duncan through whose instrumentality and the positive collaboration of the RCC this office has become a reality today.”

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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