There is a DECLARATION FEE NOTE circulating in Ghana. It is posted under Lawura Muniru. The following is the email I received from the Ghana Embassy
Thank you for your email dated May 24, 2007.
This is NOT a valid document. There is no declaration fee required by the Ghana Government or Ghana Immigration.
I fear that you might be a victim of an Internet scam. Although you have not provided many details about your situation, such as how you met this person, it sounds similar to other scams we've seen.
I would not advise you to send money to a person that you have not met. I encourage you to try to verify all information before any money is sent. Once the money is sent, and if it is a scam, we have no way of helping you recover the money. Therefore, I encourage you to proceed with caution.
Please allow me to give you some information about the non-immigrant visa application process.
All Ghanaians need a US visa to travel to the US . If a person would like to visit the US then they would need to apply for a Non-Immigrant visa. The only fee associated with this visa is a $100 non-refundable Machine Readable Visa (MRV) fee which is to be paid at Standard Chartered Bank in Ghana. Once this fee is paid the person would get a receipt from the Bank. Once she has the receipt then she would need to schedule an appointment online and complete the application online. The applicant would then appear for their scheduled interview (no one can appear on behalf of the applicant). There are no medical reports, examination, declaration fees, travel insurance, HIV tests, blood tests or vaccinations that are required for a Non-Immigrant visa.
A travel agent or travel/tour company would not be able to acquire a visa for a traveler. The person who is traveling would have to appear in person for their interview. A travel agent would only be able to arrange air travel, ground transportation and hotel/motel reservations not the visa.
The only thing that the Ghanaian, who wants to travel, would need to get from Ghana Immigration Service is a Ghanaian passport. A Ghanaian passport generally costs about $11. There is no declaration fee or certain amount in a bank account that is required by the Ghana Immigration Service and/or the Ghanaian Government before a Ghanaian would be allowed to board a flight and leave the country.
United States citizens should be alert to attempts at fraud by persons claiming to live in Ghana who profess friendship or romantic interest over the Internet. Correspondents who quickly move to discussion of intimate matters could well be the inventions of scammers. If they are after your money, eventually they will ask for it.
Once a connection is made, the correspondent typically asks the U.S. citizen to send money for living expenses, travel expenses, or 'visa costs'. Sometimes, the correspondent notifies the American citizen that they or a close family member has suffered an “accident” and is in need of immediate monetary assistance to cover medical bills. Other variations of this confidence scam have emerged of late.
Unfortunately there are several types of Internet scams that the Embassy hears about every week; all with the principle goal of soliciting money from the U.S. citizen. In the majority of cases reported to the embassy, the correspondent turned out to be a fictitious persona created only to lure the U.S. citizen into sending money. Several Americans have reported losing thousands of dollars through such scams. The anonymity of the Internet means that the U.S. citizen cannot be sure of the real name, age, marital status, nationality, or even gender of the correspondent.
Once you have realized that it is a scam it is best to stop communicating with the person/persons. Usually any thing that you say they will have an answer for it or refer to the “love” that they have for you or their “deep” desire to be with you. It is a play on emotions. It is better to stop all communications with the person.
I encourage you to try to verify all information before any money is sent. Once the money is sent, and if it is a scam, we have no way of helping you recover the money.
For additional information, please refer to our website at http://usembassy.st...gov/accra
or visit the U.S. Department of State website, visas section at http://travel.state..gov/visa.
International Financial Scams
The Consular Affairs Bureau receives daily calls about international scams involving Internet Dating, Inheritance, Work Permits, Overpayment, and Money-Laundering. Many scams are initiated through the Internet; victims range in age from 18 to 81 and come from all socio-economic backgrounds.
If you feel you have been a victim of an Internet scam, please consult our consular publications for help and send all direct reports of Internet fraud to the Federal Bureau of Investigation at: http://www.ic3.gov/
. If the scam originated through a particular website, notify the administrators of that website.
International Financial Scams Brochure - for information on Internet Dating, Inheritance, Work Permits, Overpayment, and Money-Laundering
Russia Internet Dating Schemes - for information on scams involving Internet dating from Russia
Spanish Lottery Scam
Help for American Victims of Crime Overseas
Tips for Business Travelers to Nigeria
Advance Fee Business Scams
Consular officials cannot, however, investigate crimes, provide legal advice or represent you in court, serve as official interpreters or translators, or pay legal, medical, or other fees for you.
You may want to visit the following website http://groups.yahoo..cescams/.