GENERAL INFORMATION ON GHANA’S VISAS
Ghana’s Visa is basically an authorization given to enable a person to travel and present himself for entry into Ghana. It has to be noted that a Visa is not a guarantee of entry into Ghana since it is subject to regularization and the fulfillment of other conditions at the point of entry.
The visa policy seeks to facilitate and regulate the entry of visa nationals in order to determine their eligibility to enter the country under the Immigration laws before they set out. Moreover, it is to effect a pre-entry check in order to identify and prevent from travelling to Ghana, people likely to pose a threat to national security and / or to engage in activities that contravene the laws of the country.
The two main legislations which govern the country’s visa regime are the IMMIGRATION ACT, 2000, [Act 573] and IMMIGRATION REGULATIONS, 2001, [L.I 1691].
It’s important to note that, a person other than a citizen of Ghana entering Ghana must be in possession of a valid passport or other travel document and a valid visa [where necessary] to enter Ghana.
Where a person who appears before an Immigration officer and does not have a visa or an emergency entry visa may be granted a visa subject to such conditions as may be prescribed by Regulations; and to such other conditions that the Immigration officer may impose.
Some countries in West Africa [ECOWAS member states] and some other countries in Africa are exempted from obtaining a visa before entering Ghana. Nationals from African Union member states who are not ECOWAS nationals may obtain a visa on arrival after the payment of the required fees. Similarly, holders of diplomatic/Service passports of selected countries, persons in direct airside transit, as well as holders of official passports of some specialized agencies listed in the Visa Regime of Ghana are exempt from obtaining a visa.
Moreover, there are two broad categories of Ghana Visas; those issued outside Ghana and those issued in Ghana. Visas issued in any of Ghana’s 56 Diplomatic Missions abroad cover single or multiple journeys for periods between Six months to Five years. Visas issued in Ghana, on the other hand, include Transit Visas, Emergency Entry Visas, Visas on Arrival and Re-Entry Visas.
REQUIREMENT WHEN APPLYING FOR GHANA ENTRY VISA
- Applicants should be legally resident in the country where Ghana’s Mission is sited
- Applicant’s passport photographs should have been taken not more than three months prior to the date of submission.
- Applicant should attach a copy of a return ticket or print-out of travel itinerary
- An international certificate of vaccination for Yellow Fever
- Applicant’s passport must have validity of at least six (6) months
BUSINESS VISAS: In addition to the above, a letter from the applicant’s organization in the country where mission is situated, stating among other things the reasons for the visit and a supporting /invitation letter from the applicant’s Business Associates in Ghana.
STUDY VISAS: In addition to the above, a letter from the institution in the country where mission is situated, stating the purpose of the visit and financial means whilst in Ghana. A letter of acceptance from the institution in Ghana is also required.
EMPLOYMENT VISAS: Applicants for employment visas are required to submit in addition to their form an Employment Contract and a proof of
Grant of Employment Quota in Ghana.
REFERENCES: Applicant could use any of the following as a reference;
- Addresses of Business Associates
- Address of Hotel/Lodge
Educational Institution in Ghana
PART I—ENTRY AND DEPARTURE
A person in charge of a sea-going vessel, aircraft or vehicle arriving at any port or place in Ghana shall not permit a passenger who embarked outside Ghana to disembark until disembarkation has been authorized by the immigration officer.
Section 2—Appearance Before Immigration Officer on Entering Ghana.
(1) A person entering Ghana shall enter at an authorized point and shall proceed to the nearest
immigration office, produce his travel document and complete the prescribed forms.
(2) A person who arrives by sea or air in Ghana at a place other than an authorized place or port, shall within forty-eight hours proceed to and report to the immigration officer at the nearest immigration post.
(3) An immigration officer to whom a person reports in accordance with this section shall, if the person is not prohibited from entering Ghana, and he is satisfied by documentary or other evidence of the person’s identity grant that person entry subject to this Act.
(4) An immigration officer may dispense with the personal attendance of any person if he is satisfied by documentary or other evidence of that person’s identity and right to enter Ghana.
(5) This section does not apply to any person who enters Ghana in direct transit to a place outside Ghana where that person arrives in:
(a) A vessel which is proceeding to a place outside Ghana and does not disembark from the vessel;
(b) An aircraft, and does not leave the transit area of the airport and leaves Ghana within twenty-four hours of arrival on the same aircraft or another aircraft; or
(c) A vehicle or vessel or aircraft and is escorted by an immigration officer from the point of entry to the exit point, and leaves Ghana within forty-eight hours of arrival.
(6) Any person who contravenes this section commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding five million cedis or imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months or to both.
(7) Subject to this Act, Regulations may provide for passengers in transit without entry visa to enter Ghana for the purpose of seeing places of interest.
Conditions for Entry into Ghana.
(1) Subject to this Act where an immigration officer is satisfied that a person other than a citizen of Ghana entering Ghana;
(a) is in possession of a valid passport or other travel document and a valid visa to enter Ghana where
(b) Is exempted from obtaining a visa to enter Ghana;
(c) Has his name endorsed upon a visa and is in the company of the holder of the visa;
(d) Has applied and been granted an emergency entry permit; or
(e) Is a person admitted to diplomatic status by the Government of Ghana, the immigration officer
may permit that person to enter Ghana for a period that may be specified.
(2) A prohibited immigrant within the meaning of section 8 shall not be permitted to enter Ghana.
(3) Where a person who appears
before an immigration officer does not have a visa or an emergency
entry permit, the immigration officer may grant him a visa subject to such conditions as may be
prescribed by Regulations, and to such other conditions that the immigration officer may impose.
(4) Conditions prescribed for the purpose of this section may relate to—
(a) Security to be furnished whether by bond, deposit or otherwise, and the liability of the person who
provides the security;
(b) Place of residence in Ghana;
(c) Occupation or business to be followed or undertaken;
(d) Any activities which might offend the religious beliefs of any section of the community;
(e) In the case of permission for passing through Ghana, the route to be followed; and (f) In the case of any condition or permit in the form of a pass, the return of the pass