The British High Commission has donated a brand new Toyota Fortunner vehicle to the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) to aid its newly created specialised unit to combat visa fraud and related offences.

The vehicle was handed over to the GIS on behalf of the High Commission by the Regional Capacity Building Manager, Alistair Rushton, at a short presentation ceremony at the GIS Headquarters in Accra, Tuesday.

Other items that were also donated to the GIS include, specialised laptops, fraud detection equipment, batons and handcuffs.

Speaking at the ceremony, Mr. Rushton expressed the delight for High Commission to support and contribute in building the capacity of Officers of GIS in intelligence gathering and investigations targeted at fake travel documents, illegal acquisition of visas, human smuggling and trafficking, and activities of organised crime group. 

He noted that his outfit has over the years organised capacity programmes for officers of the GIS. “Recently, eight Officers have been trained to investigate organised crime,” he added.

Mr. Rushton who was accompanied by Emma Hardy, First Secretary and Regional Manager of Africa for Immigration Enforcement International, indicated that he was happy about the set skills that had been acquired by the officers to combat organised crime. “The officers are highly skilled and very friendly, they can function and relate well with other sister security agencies, and I urge them to share intelligence with sister security agencies,” he said.  

On his part, the Comptroller-General of Immigration (CGI), Mr. Kwame Asuah Takyi, expressed his appreciation to the High Commission for the kind gesture and for building the capacity of officers of the specialised unit.

He said the Service was making strides in building the capacity of Officers and equipping them with the necessary tools and logistics in the fight against organised crime. 

“Eight officers were identified and trained in digital forensic investigation, open-source investigation, unarmed combat, document fraud detection and investigation into human smuggling and trafficking,” he noted. 

The training, the CGI indicated, has improved on work efficiency and enhanced the image of the Service as well.

Mr. Takyi explained that recent developments on migration have made it a focal point of every country which he said required to be managed effectively to curb crimes. “One aspect of managing migration effectively is training and continuous capacity building of our officers,” he added.

He indicated that he was aware that the High Commission was ready to put up an office accommodation at the Document Fraud Expertise Centre (DFEC) at Kotoka International Airport (KIA) in Accra for the specialised unit.