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The government of Ghana through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration has extended the validity period of the Ghanaian passport from five years to 10 years.

The latest development was contained in a letter signed by the Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, Mohammed Habibu Tijani and addressed to all Ghanaian Missions abroad.

“Missions are hereby informed that government has decided to extend the validity of ordinary passport booklets issued to qualified Ghanaian applicants from five years to ten years (5-10 years) with effect from 31st March 2019. The processing fees remain the same until further notice.” The notice stated

The decision to increase it comes after complaints by some Ghanaians that the five-year validity period was too short.

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An online petition collecting signatures to get the government to increase the validity had received more than 10,000 endorsements over the past few months.

In the recent past, Ghanaian passports were valid for (10) years until it was changed to 5 years in a bid to conform to recommended standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization.

Ghanaian citizens who called for the extension in the years of validity back to ten years in their arguments indicated that the change in the period will take away the stress and extra resources, and the hurdles “one needs to go through in passport acquisition and renewal while at the same time reducing the congestion at our various Passport Acquisition Centers and Embassies across the globe.”

Meanwhile, the cost of processing passports in Ghana remains GHc 50 and GHc100 for regular and express services respectively.