23.07.2004 General News

Fake travelling documents denting Ghana's image

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Accra, July 23, GNA - A member of the Copenhagen City Council, Ms Anna Ekua Saakwa, has observed that, the use of fake travelling documents by Ghanaians, is adversely affecting the image of Ghana abroad.

Ms Saakwa, a Ghanaian, domiciled in Denmark for the past 20 years, told the Ghana News Agency, in an interview in Accra on Friday that the practice should be of worry to all Ghanaians, especially those who travel with genuine documents.

"Ghanaians are subjected to degrading treatments due to the stringent measures being adopted by the various immigration authorities. "Those of us resident abroad, who have the resources to assist our compatriots to secure the relevant travelling documents genuinely, should not hesitate to do so."

She expressed disgust about the deportation of 25 Ghanaians from Italy, where they failed to gain entry after claiming they were Sudanese nationals fleeing the crisis in the Darfur region.

Ms Saakwa who is also the chairman of African Foundation for Health Information and Culture (AFHIC), a non-governmental organisation based in Copenhagen, described the situation as shameful.

She called on the Government to create the enabling environment to reduce the enticement of the youth to greener pastures.

"There is no greener pasture any where again," she said.

Ms Saakwa appealed to Ghanaians living abroad to strive to be worthy ambassadors of the country, by projecting its image, as the oasis of peace, stability and democratic development in West Africa. She expressed concern about the poor educational infrastructure in the rural areas and appealed to philanthropists to help reverse the situation.

"What our people in the villages need are the few hundreds of cedis that we spend at bars and other entertainment spots."

Ms Saakwa, who has been nominated as the Odikro (Ruler) of Afraponso, in the Western Region, for her contribution towards the development of her hometown, called for redefinition of the role of chiefs, to conform to the global developmental agenda.

"Our chiefs should be development oriented. They must move out to attract investors and lead the crusade against social vices and HIV/AIDS."

Ms Saakwa would be enstooled at a ceremony on July 31, 2004, with the stool name Nana Ekua Bri II.

She promised to join hands with all stakeholders to improve the standard of living of the people.

She disclosed that she would launch a hundred million-cedi educational fund to support educational pursuit in the town. 23 July 04

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