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Diasporian News of Monday, 9 May 2005

Source: jfm

Ghanaians Detained Over Suspected Fake Passports

Officials of Ghana?s Embassy in Paris are negotiating with French immigration officials for the release of three Ghanaians who have been held since last Friday for allegedly possessing fake passports.

The three who have denied the allegation are to be arraigned before a court in Paris on Tuesday, unless the embassy officials can certify that their passports are genuine.

The three, Mark Amentor, Betty Aryeetey and Comfort Asantewaa earlier told JOY News that their efforts to get assistance from Ghana?s Embassy had been futile.

? They say I have changed my photograph in the passport, but I have a Chinese residence permit in it, if my passport was fake, China wouldn?t have allowed me exit through its immigration,? Mr. Ametor says

According to him he has been travelling to Niarobi, Hong Kong and Addis Ababa with the same passport for the past two years.

He says he was detained at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris on his way to a business trip to Havana.

?I was not transiting, I was just changing aircraft and they say my passport is not good and that I have changed my photograph,? he says.

Mr. Ametor says after a heated argument with the immigration officials, the Ghanaian ambassador to France was called on phone to help out but his wife who answered the call, says her husband cannot help them.

?We are still here, we don?t know what is going on, we just want a representative from Ghana to certify the passport,? he says.

However, enquiries by Joy News at the Ghana?s consulate in Paris revealed that the Head of Chancery, Simon Nyameke had taken up the issue and is negotiating with immigration officials for their release.

The assistant Consular, Oscar Adjomah, told JOY News it is likely the three will be released today (Monday) once their passports have been certified as genuine.