The National Identification Authority (NIA), says it has been trying to engage former President John Mahama on his concerns with the registration and instant issuance of the Ghana Card.
Mr. Mahama has criticized the decision not to accept Voters’ ID cards as proof of citizenship for those applying for the cards.
The NIA per the law backed by parliament, only accepts passports and birth certificates as proof of citizenship.
The Authority on Tuesday registered the two other living former presidents, John Kufuor and Jerry John Rawlings.
Despite Mr. Rawlings’ registration, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) remains opposed to the process.
NIA engages Rawlings, Kufuor on Ghana card
The Chief Executive Officer of the NIA, Prof. Ken Attafuah in a Citi News interview said, it had asked former presidents Jerry John Rawlings and John Kufuor to register them as part of the early Ghana card registration process.
He added that the NIA will continue to register staff of other critical institutions as part of the early registration process.
“We had stakeholder engagements with President Rawlings and President Kufuor and today we’ve had the privilege of registering the two gallant men. We are in the process of registering Ghanaians and these two are very eminent Ghanaians. We are registering other Ghanaians today. We are at the premises of the audit service, judicial service, immigration, prisons fire service and several other places. We are determined to stay focused and to continue with discharging our statutory mandate.”
Although Mr. Mahama has assured that the NDC will do everything possible to have the identification scope expanded, Prof. Ken Attafuah said his outfit has made “reasonable efforts to reach out to [Mr. Mahama] in order that we will have stakeholder engagements.”
“Our contacts with Bawa Mogtari [Mr. Mahama’s aide], since last year, have been good. She has indicated that she will revert to us as soon as she is able to get a date. We are looking forward to an opportunity,” Prof. Attafuah stated.
Minority MPs have already boycotted the Ghana Card registration process over the contentions.
The Minority has said over 20 million Ghanaians will be disenfranchised because of the limitations on the proof of citizenship.
It is currently backing a lawsuit challenging the NIA’s basis for only accepting passports and birth certificates to establish citizenship.
The government has told Parliament it will not compromise on its laid-down procedure for the registration.
In the government’s presentation to Parliament, it indicated that the only alternative in the absence of passports and birth certificates will remain the swearing of affidavits.
Over 2, 700 personnel are being trained by the Judiciary to administer oaths and certify Ghanaians without the required identification.
By: Duke Mensah Opoku & Delali Adogla-Bessa/citinewsroom/Ghana