The Information Services Department (ISD) on Friday, issued a word of caution to the public, to desist from engaging in any transactions with a travel and tour company dubbed “Travel to the United States through Cuba”.
The ISD in a press release explained this was a new business venture currently operating in Accra and Kumasi where syndicates advertised through the media and popular websites such as www.tonaton.com, with the pretence of helping people to travel to America, only for them to get stranded in Cuba with severe immigration complications.
Consequently, the Cuban immigration authorities had unofficially began refusing entry to, and deporting African migrants immediately on their arrival in the country, in spite of valid visas.
It said based on the information received from the Ministry of the Interior, the Cuban Immigration Authority, was in the process of adopting firmer reforms aimed at restricting the entry of African migrants, especially Ghanaians, from using Cuba as an entry point into the United States of America (USA), Central Americas and other Caribbean countries.
The strict immigration reforms, followed interrogations of mostly Ghanaian nationals and some Nigerians, who had informed Cuban authorities that the country was being used as a conduit to the USA in particular, it said.
The reforms were therefore intended to curtail the surge of African migrants especially from Ghana since 2015, and to maintain international and regional standards in human trafficking as well as migration flows.
In a related development, it said over 200 Ghanaian nationals were currently stranded at the Costa Rican-Nicaraguan border post of Penas Blancas, following their attempts to use the area to transit into the USA.
The Statement said a steady surge of Ghana migrants to Cuba had been observed over the past year, especially following the commencement of Turkish Airlines route to Havana in November, 2016.
The statement said most of the migrants were deceived by local syndicates who claimed to have collaborators in Cuba, who could immediately facilitate their entry into the US upon their arrival.