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Di ‘Goro Boys’ Wey Dey Extort Moni for Passport Office for Ghana

Say you go get passport for Ghana today, be like you wan squeeze water for rock.

Na so di process dey stress pipo across di kontri.

Officials for di passport office dey work plus middlemen wey dey extort moni from applicants before dem go fast-track di process give dem.

Di middlemen na ‘goro boys’.

Dia work be say dem go hang around di passport office den accept pipo documents den take go inside make dem do give dem

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If you follow di regular process, na so your passport go fit delay for 6 months to one year before dem go print give you.

If you pay moni GHC 500 ($44) to GHC 3,000 ($265) your passport go ready inside five days.

Plenty pipo don experience dis.


Kwabena Addo never get any good experience.

Im apply for renewal of im passport for di northern regional capital, Tamale for October 2022.

Kwabena explain say passport officials tell am say di booklets don finish.

“Since October 2022, I pursue di passport till July 2023 before dem print give me”.

Im add say pipo tok am say make im pay GHC 800 ($71) for goro boy make dem print give am quick quick.

But e no do am.

“If i born pikin di time I do di application, by now my pikin almost chop one year. Las las ibi nine months before I get di document,” Kwabena tok.

Di passport office for dia website say e for take at least three weeks to process, but if you no get goro boy, you go wait plenty months, like Kwabena Addo.

Nationality wahala

Odas like Malise Omoloye still dey wait dia passports four months.

Im own na complex process sake of e go undertake nationality test – im grandpapa na Nigerian but e mama be Ghanaian.

“I go thru di biometric process wey dem make me face di vetting panel over di nationality wahala.

Dat vetting panel stress me and my mama well well dat day”.

Malise tok say e no dey hurry so e no go pay any moni give goro boys – im go wait.

Na so anoda pesin Francis Oko Armah explain say im go thru di same stress since im apply for passport 2012, 2016 den 2021.

Oko wey get plenty experience for di process tok say “ e dey frustrating”.

“If you dey want am quick quick you go pay goro boy. But me I tok myself say I go go thru di system. Na so I take wait plenty months”.

But John Ankoh no go thru dis kind stress.

E tok say “goro boys go find booklet give you now now”.

E explain to BBC Pidgin say im pay GHC 900 ($79) give goro boy wey print di passport give am in six days for 2022.

Dis be di time di office tok say dem short booklets so dem no dey print until further notice.

Di ministry announce for April 2022 say dia booklets ond oda printing materials don finish.

But during di time of di shortage, goro boys dey fit print passport give pesin wey pay moni give dem.

Fast forward to August 2023, John Ankoh tok BBC Pidgin say only last week “my fiancé get im passport in five days afta we pay GHC 800 ($71) give one goro boy”.

Di goro boy business

If you go di passport office young men dey hang around dey chase applicants make dem do di process give dem for one price.

Di goro boys get connections for inside di office so if dem collect di documents dem go take go inside wey officials go process am.

No be all di goro boys dem dey hang around di passport office tho.

Som dey work remotely.

If you contact dem, you go provide di documents, den you pay di charge, depending on how fast you want am.

Martino (no be im real name) dey fast-track passport give plenty pipo.

E say im get contact for di office – so if you send your original appointment, im go rebook anoda day for you.

Di applicant for just tell am wen im dey wan go di office make dem capture im details.

E go collect di monI den settle im contact pesin inside di office.

Martino dey fit get two applicants each day, sometimes e fit get three.

Im clients dey fit refer oda pipo give am also.

Dia process fast.

Foreign affairs minister vex

Foreign affairs minister for di kontri don vex say officials and goro boys dey spoil di system.

Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey tok say she “sack di officials for di office wey don stay for post for more dan one year”.

She say make dem no come di office from Monday August 21.

Di officers be from di kontri security agencies wey dey on secondment for di passport office.

Di minster tok say “di cartel of goro boys don dey work plus insiders dat na why di illegality dey go on”.

“Investigations don dey go on wia some names pop up. We dey try digitize di passport system but corrupt officials dey manipulate di online system,” madam Botchwey add.

Di minister don pay surprise visit go di passport office and she see di shakara wey dey happun for dia.

Na im tok say di process wey pipo for pay GHC 100 ($9) den GHC 150 ($13), now dey cost GHC 2000 ($176) den GHC 3000 ($265) for di goro system.

Dis one bad.

UN bribery den corruption report

Di united nations office on drugs & crime (UNODC) 2021 report don show say bribery dey happun for plenti public institutions.

Di report sabi say di passport office be di 6th agency wey dey collect bribes for di kontri.

Aside say di police wey rank first wit 53.2%, immigration don get 37.4%.

Di ghana revenue authority (GRA) also get 33.6%, driver & vehicle licensing authority (DVLA) dey 29.5% as di lands commission figure be 32.4%.

Passport agency officials score 29.0% for di ranking.

Na im di report summarize say “di money pipo pay for cash bribe be GHC 5b ($441m) – di amount equal one third of di education ministry budget for 2021”.

Wetin go happun

Di foreign affairs minister don tok say dem dey investigate di mata well well.

“Dis goro business no fit continue, im for stop”, madam Ayorkor Botchwey tok.

But ranking member for di foreign affairs committee for parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa say make dem “also address di issues for di passport acquisition process”.

“Di ministry for check di backlog of booklets, underhand dealings den dey processes wey dey frustrate pesin,” oga Ablakwa tok.

Source : BBC