A total of 353 Ghanaians have been returned from various countries around the world in the first three months of 2016 as a result of immigration-related issues.
Reasons for the return of the affected persons to Ghana include illegal stay, over-staying of permits, crime and inadmissibility.
Other reasons are use of discretion by Entry Clearance Officers, who consider reasons for coming into their country doubtful, inability to mention or provide evidence to prove that they had a host in the country of destination, as well as other entry clearance issues.
Countries where Ghanaians were deported from include Saudi Arabia – 61, Kuwait -17, UK – 12, Germany – 8, and Malaysia – 7.
Ghanaians were refused entry into countries such as South Africa – 22, Russia – 15, Turkey -12, United Kingdom – 10, and Egypt – 9.
Speaking to The Finder on the first quarter data compiled by the Immigration Service on Ghanaians returned from aboard, Head of Public Affairs of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), Comptroller of Immigration (COI) Mr Francis Palmdeti said that 174 out of the number were deported.
According to him, 110 of them were removed for over-staying their permits in their countries of destination while 24 were removed for illegal stay.
In addition, 40 persons returned were removed for various immigration-related offences and other crimes.
“On the other hand, 179 out of the number were inadmissible, as they were not allowed to enter their intended destination countries,” he said.
COI Palmdeti stated that 68 of the affected persons were refused entry because the Entry Clearance Officers considered their reasons for coming into their country doubtful.
He added that 17 of the affected persons were also refused entry because they were unable to mention or provide evidence to prove that they had a host in the country of destination while 84 were brought back for other entry clearance issues.
The GIS Head of Public Affairs emphasised that immigration authorities do not tolerate persons who over stay or reside illegally in their count “Moreover, travelling without a clear purpose or not having a host at your destination could compel the immigration officials to deny you entry into their country.
“Considering the high cost associated with travelling abroad, it is imperative that Ghanaians who wish travel out of the country seek information before they embark,” he cautioned.
COI Palmdeti stated that the Ghana Immigration Service has the platform to create greater awareness in order draw attention to orderly and regular means of migrating.
“Information on rights, procedures and expectations will reduce the number of Ghanaians who are refuse entry, repatriated or deported.
“The Ghana Immigration Service continues to recommend safe and regular ways to migrate and is, therefore committed to providing relevant information through its Migration Information Centre and Bureau for prospective travellers,” he said.