General News of Wednesday, 13 June 2018
The Executive Secretary of the National Identification Authority (NIA) Professor Ken Attafuah has said holding a Ghana passport or birth certificate does not guarantee an automatic right to the Ghana Card.
According to the NIA Boss, presenting the aforementioned documents for the purposes of registration and issuance of the Ghana Card is not an automatic prove of one’s citizenship.
“That’s is why there’s an interview process,” he stated Tuesday when he appeared before Parliament to answer questions on the roll out of the Ghana Card.
The holder of the Ghana passport or birth certificate, considered as the root identity cards, he explained presents him or herself as an applicant for the Ghana Card, saying “when you do that the registration officer will interview you nonetheless and if he or she has reason to believe that despite your holding the passport, you are like Evans, the Nigerian Kidnapper, you will not be registered for the Ghana Card.”
“So, the presentation of either of these does not guarantee automatic registration. It is important that we understand and accept it. That’s the law as passed by this honourable house,” he reiterated.
Professor Attafuah’s explanation comes in the wake of the Minority’s boycott of the exercise which began in Parliament Tuesday and former President John Mahama’s claim that the Akufo-Addo government is plotting to “denationalize” a section of Ghanaians with the Ghana card.
According to the former president, the criteria one needs to meet before being issued with the national card under the supervision of the NIA are too stringent since majority of Ghanaians do not have birth certificates or passports.
Speaking at the final Unity Walk of the NDC in the Volta region on Saturday, 9 June 2018, he said it is “illogical” and short-sightedness on the part of the government to turn deaf ears on suggestions from the opposition.
He said: “The ID card is going to become the most important identification to Ghanaians. If you don’t have a birth certificate or a passport you must swear an affidavit, supported by two persons who have identity as Ghanaians, if you go to one of the villages in my constituency – Bole Bamboi – perhaps nobody has a birth certificate or passport so for the 300 or 400 people with no birth certificate or passport how are you going to register them?”