Eighteen foreign nationals were last Friday arrested and repatriated for entering Ghana from Cote d’Ivoire through an illegal route at Sewum, in the Aowin Municipality of the Western North Region.
The suspects, comprising 17 Burkinabes and an Ivorian, were all males aged between 17 and 55 years, and carried on them identity cards of their respective countries.
This brings the total number of foreign nationals who entered the Western North Region illegally, and were arrested and repatriated, since the closure of the country’s borders, to 190.
A team of Immigration Officers led by the Asankragwa Municipal Commander of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), Deputy Superintendent of Immigration (DSI) Francis Kofi Apaw, together with teams from the Ghana Police Service and Bureau of National Investigations (BNI), on patrols intercepted two Nissan Caravan mini busses with registration numbers GX 2137-17 and AS 1899-17, en route to Kumasi.
A release issued and signed by the Western Regional Public Affairs Officer of the GIS, Assistant Inspector Moses Manford Akakpo and copied to the Ghanaian Times disclosed.
It added: “This brings the number of interceptions and repatriation of persons made by the GIS in the Western Region, through intensified surveillance/patrols and with the support of the various sister security agencies to about 190, since the closure of the country’s borders.”
The release noted that the severity of the security challenges posed to Ghana, in the wake of the fight against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, informed the Municipal Security heads to convene an emergency meeting, which upon a unanimous decision, directed the immediate repatriation of these illegal ECOWAS migrants through the Sewum Border Post.
It said, at the Sewum Border Post, which falls under the Dadieso Sector Command of GIS, a team of Immigration Officers, led by Deputy Superintendent of Immigration (DSI) Desmond Alabison, conducted further investigations before handing the suspects over to the Ivorian authorities.
“The Western Regional Command of the GIS is reaffirming its unwavering commitment in ensuring the continuous maintenance of optimum security within our various entry points in the region.
“We are therefore, appealing to all well-meaning people of the Western Region, especially the leadership of the communities doted across our border lines, as well as transport operators to assist by volunteering useful information in this regard. Let’s fight the coronavirus together,” the GIS release concluded.