Kotoka International Airport’s Policy Of ‘Bouncers’ At The Entrance Is Inherently Stupid And Breeds Corruption – CHRIS-VINCENT Writes

From London Heathrow Airport to Shanghai Pudong International Airport to Singapore Changi Airport to Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, and then Hamad International Airport in Qatar as well as the Dubai International Airport—I have used all these and many airports—and all these airports allow visitors to enter with travellers.

So why does Ghana’s Kotoka International Airport have “bouncers” at the entrance, preventing families and friends to go into the departure halls with travellers?

The only reason that comes to mind is that the management of the airport believes Ghanaians are somewhat stupid and non-travellers will overcrowd the place. Even if that is the case, why don’t you institute a policy of 3 visitors per traveller?

As it stands, you would have to “bribe or maneuverer” your way somehow with the security folks at the entrance to the airport to be able to go in with a family or friend. When people say our systems foster corruption—this is a clear case in point.

And this unofficial, albeit strange, policy that visitors are not allowed into the departure hall is easily evaded by just holding a passport and pushing some luggage through—the security folks have no means of determining who is truly the traveller. Thus, the policy is useless if a person really wants to take pain to enter the airport.

As a frequent traveller, no one really follows me to the airport anywhere in the world except persons dropping me off. But even that, it is always nice to grab some drinks or food with these people who have taken the time to make a trip to the airport with me.

In Ghana, while there are restaurants at the departure hall, visitors are not allowed to accompany travellers into the hall—so why would a traveller like me who has free access to lounges when I go through security ever want to patronize these restaurants at the departure hall?

It makes no sense to have restaurants at the departure halls then—because those restaurants are mostly used by travellers and their visitors. The travellers alone can go through security and use the lounges or restaurants (not that we have anything better in Ghana) after security.

You cannot cite security concerns as the reason why visitors are not allowed into Kotoka International Airport—because if this is really a concern, Heathrow, Schiphol, Hamad, Pudong, Charles De Gaulle, Changi and others, some of the best and busy airports would have the same non-visitors approach or measure.

While at this, let me mention that it is annoying—perhaps a deep bother to many travellers that there is no seating area at the departure hall. Who made this decision and why?

And when coming into Ghana, why must customs officers have to open the bags of every single traveller—what is the meaning of this? The international practice around the world is this: if you have something to declare you go through a section and if you have nothing to declare, you go through a different section too. Randomly, customs officers may still select people who have gone through the nothing to declare section and open their bags—but they only do this randomly.

In Ghana, it is not random or sporadic—it is whether you bribe/pay someone at the custom or your time will be wasted with officers opening your bag and turning your things up and down–anyhow. This is unacceptable, especially after a long flight.

Being an international airport means we must behave in a manner that is in consonance with international standards—currently, we are just taking the piss.

This post was published on December 23, 2022 9:42 AM

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