In 2017, the Global Passport Index made a study about the ranking of the best passports in the world. Due to the Economic Community of West African States - ECOWAS, some African countries were among the most important ranked countries.
The ranking didn’t only give recognition to the African countries but also the holders of these passports of the African countries can enter other countries without visas.
In this ranking, the Canadian financial consulting firm, Arton Capital compared the passports of 199 countries around the world, based on public data and official information provided by government agencies.
Passports were then classified according to the number of countries to which they provide access without their citizens needing to obtain a visa. For the East, the ranking sees Hong Kong in the lead.
In Africa, it is the ECOWAS that takes the lion's share. Here is the ranking of the 15 African countries and the numbers of open destinations without a visa are the following:
- Gambia 63
- Cape Verde 63
- Ghana 57
- Sierra Leone 56
- Benin 55
- Guinea 54
- Ivory Coast 54
- Senegal 53
- Burkina Faso 52
- Mali 51
- Togo 50
- Niger 49
- Guinea Bissau 47
- Liberia 44
- Nigeria 41
With this ranking, it is possible for the holder of a Gambian passport to visit 63 countries without an entry visa. Nigeria is lagging behind with the 43rd place and with the opening to 41 countries without visas.
Of the 54 African countries, four classified as having powerful passports are Seychelles, Mauritius, Botswana, and South Africa which occupy the first four steps of the African podium.
Globally, Germany has ranked as the country with the strongest passport and the owners have the opportunity to visit 158 countries without a visa on arrival. Germany followed in second and third place from Singapore and South Korea, with visa-free access in 157 countries.
The difficulties and challenges many visa applicants face in various embassies in Africa have forced them to pursue other African passports easy to travel with. For example, the European police or immigration have arrested some African nationals in possession of other African countries passports.
Therefore, it's better in the interest of Ghanaians if the government has increased the security or rules in acquiring Ghanaian documents.