As an African, is it easy to obtain a passport in your country?

Published: 24/Nov/2023
Source: Ghana Business News

By Emmanuel K Dogbevi

Applying for and getting a travel document such as a passport in most African countries can be a traumatic experience for most citizens.

Despite advances in technology, which normally should improve service delivery in particular for the issuance of documents such as a passport, so many human factors make it extremely difficult for citizens to apply for and get a passport issued to them in good time.

Obtaining a passport, even though, is a fundamental right of all citizens rightly belonging to any modern state, some argue that it is a privilege to be given a passport, because it can be withdrawn. However, if free movement is a right, and a passport facilitates free movement to a large degree, then obtaining a passport must be tied to the rights to move freely once a person meets all the requirements for its acquisition.

This story was inspired by reactions to a post that I made on Facebook about a conversation I had with a journalist friend from Cote d’Ivoire. This friend had misplaced his passport while in another country attending and covering a conference. He was considering going to his country’s Embassy for a document to facilitate his trip back home, if he doesn’t find the passport. That was when I asked him how long it took to obtain a passport in Cote d’Ivoire after applying for it. He said three days, at most four, in case the issuing agency had a hitch.

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Themes: Cartes d’identité et passeports
Regions: Algérie, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Kenya, Malawi, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Cameroun, Ethiopie, Djibouti
Year: 2023