Ghanaian Citizenship by Birth – A case for progressive reforms

Published: 15/Avr/2015
Source: Daily Graphic (Accra)

BY: Elikplim Agbemava

An interesting discussion I had with a friend a couple of weeks ago has prompted me to delve into the issue of who is a citizen of Ghana by birth and whether members of every indigenous ethnic grouping found in Ghana can automatically regard themselves as Ghanaians by birth.

The problem my friend had is that he being a Fulani, had his Passport application refused because the Fulani is not an indigenous tribe of Ghana. This refusal occurred even though he backed his application with a valid birth certificate that showed that he is Ghanaian.

The question of who is a citizen of a country by birth in this modern world is always a legal question and an answer to this critical question must come from some law.

In the case of Ghana it is the Citizenship Act, 2000 (ACT 591). By this law one can be a citizen of Ghana by birth, through adoption, marriage or naturalization. However, out of the four methods of acquiring citizenship in Ghana the most controversial has been citizenship by birth.

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Themes: Acquisition par les enfants, Discrimination, Naturalisation et le mariage, Ethnique/Raciale/Religieuse
Regions: Ghana
Year: 2015