The Ningo Prampram MP, Sam George has challenged Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia to travel with the Ghana card to demonstrate that it is indeed a travel document.
He contended that the Vice President is misinforming the public on the usage of the Ghana Card.
Mr. Georges’ dare comes after the Vice President listed many successes of government’s the digitization drive, including a claim that the Ghana Card can be used to travel abroad.
“People could not understand how the Ghana Card, certified by ICAO, could be used as travel document and they mocked the idea. But today, it is a reality and our diasporans should get the Ghana card before they leave Ghana. When they get the Ghana card, they can travel to Ghana without applying for a visa at any embassy abroad,” he said during his speech at the launch of the E-pharmacy platform on Monday.
However, speaking in an interview on Joy FM’s News Night on Tuesday, the member of the Communication Committee in Parliament stressed that the Ghana card is not a full travel document yet.
“Our Vice President is at see, he does not understand the issues. You need to use the Ghana Card as a travel visa if it can allow you to embark and disembark. Because the travel is only completed when you can embark from one country and enter another country. As we speak today, when you get to the Kotoka International Airport, for departures, there is no desk for Ghana cards. There is only a desk for Ghana cards for arrival and so it is only for citizens of this country returning home.”
“And even for citizens returning home, if you are returning from London for example, at London Heathrow, you will not be allowed to board any plane by showing only your Ghana Card. You must show a passport and show that either that passport is a Ghanaian passport that allows you to fly back to Ghana without a visa, or if it is of any other country, show a Ghanaian visa.
Mr. Sam George stressed that, “Dr. Bawumia himself, as Vice President, cannot travel from Ghana with his Ghana card. I am challenging Dr. Bawumia to embark on a foreign trip from Ghana, using his Ghana card alone. This level of deception of the public by a public officer of the rank of Vice President is unbecoming.”
He noted that it is worrying for the Minister of Foreign Affairs to be forced to keep correcting the Vice President on the issue.
Following Dr. Bawumia’s repetition of the claim that the Ghana Card could be used as a travel document on Monday, the Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, during an interaction with media men on Tuesday, explained that the Ghana card is currently for internal use.
“The Ghana Card is internal. It is for those of us here,” she said.