Ghanaian nationals in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa have passionately appealed to the government of Ghana through the High Commission of Ghana in South Africa to open a consulate for them.
According to them, the risks and difficulties in traveling for about one thousand (1000) kilometers distance from Eastern Cape to Pretoria, the capital city of South Africa for consular services such as issuing of visas, renewing and applying for passports would be reduced if they get consulate in the province.
Speaking in an interview, the Chairman for Ghanaian Community of Butterworth in the Eastern Cape Province, Mr. Stephen Kojo Wulingminga bemoaned the failure of the past and present Ghana’s Ambassadors to South Africa to grant them their request.
“We have made so many appeals but have proven futile. Ghanaians in Eastern Cape are suffering with this long-distance to Pretoria for consular services, we have very large population here so we are appealing once again to Mr. George Ayisi Boateng, Ghana’ Ambassador in South to negotiate for us,” he stated.
Adding that Eastern Cape is the largest tourism city in South Africa for both Ghanaians and other foreign nationals hence the need for them to get a consulate.
Before 1993, the Eastern Cape was part of the Cape Province. Today it includes the old homelands of Ciskei and Transkei. Many of South Africa's leaders were born in the Eastern Cape, like Thabo Mbeki, Nelson Mandela and Steve Biko.
Another Ghanaian told this reporter that they are unable to go and renew their passports for proper documentation to stay in the country due to the long distance travelling to Pretoria.
Meanwhile, the High Commissioner of Ghana to South Africa, H.E Mr. George Ayisi Boateng has assured that he will work assiduously to help grant them their request.
He added that the Nana Addo led NPP government has better plans for Ghanaian diaspora in South Africa.