The British High Commissioner Jon Benjamin has dismissed suggestions that the High Commission and embassies in the country have quotas for visas they issue.
Mr Jon Benjamin’s comment comes after a Ghanaian surgeon at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital was denied a visa by the Spanish Embassy which claimed he might not return to Ghana.
The refusal formed the basis of a discussion on the Joy FM Super Morning Show to gain better appreciation of the process for obtaining a visa.
Dr. Agbeko Ocloo wrote an angry letter to the Spanish Ambassador, saying he felt insulted at the suggestion that he would not return to Ghana if he was granted the visa.
“I find it laughable that you think I will not return to Ghana and end up as an illegal immigrant in Spain where people of my skin tone are treated as second-class citizens. I have a wife and children whom I do not intend to abandon. Although I do not consider myself wealthy, I am very comfortable economically and have investments in property and other assets in Ghana. How did you ever come to the conclusion that I was a flight risk?” he asked.
Sharing a frustrating experience, a caller into the Super Morning Show discussions, recounted how despite receiving an admission letter for a Masters Programme in UK, she was refused a visa.
She said travelling to the UK was not a new experience because she had stayed there for two years. Her financial position, she believed, was also strong because the bank statement she presented was “five times” the cost of her tuition.
Yet she was denied.
According to Jon Benjamin, the High Commission does not work within a certain number of visas for a day, month or year as some believe.
It has been suggested that when foreign consulates reach the maximum number of visas they are allowed to issue for a particular day, or week or month, they refuse any applicant who comes subsequently without justifiable reason, and regardless of the status of the applicant.
“That’s nonsense. There is no [such] qutoa,” Jon Benjamin stressed.
The issuance of visas depends “entirely on the merit of each case”, he maintained.
He said it was, at least, in theory, possible for all applicants to get a visa on a particular day or everybody refused on another day.
“There is no quota. I cannot say it more clearly, there is no quota,” he emphasised.
Story by Ghana|Myjoyonline|Edwin Appiah|[email protected]
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