A group calling itself the Coalition of Ghanaians Without Ghana Card (GWiGC), is calling on the general public to resist any attempts by the Electoral Commission (EC) to use the Ghana card as the sole document for registration to vote in the upcoming 2024 general elections.
Lead convener of the Coalition, Richard Kasu made the call at a press briefing in Accra, Thursday.
According to the group, the insistence of the EC to go on that tangent had the potential of disenfranchising several Ghanaians who may not have the Ghana card when the voter registration exercise opens.
“Having thoroughly interrogated the issues and reforms being contemplated by the
EC including its insistence on the use of the Ghana Card as sole document for voter registration, we would like to reiterate our displeasure over the unpopular position by the EC – We have taken note of the ongoing efforts by the EC to review
the existing Constitutional Instrument (CI) particularly portions pertaining to registration of
voters. As you may recall, Parliament on Friday, 31st March 2023, unanimously rejected the EC,s CI laid before it which sought to make the
Ghana card sole document for voter registration,” it said.
The Coalition said it was aware of the premium registration for the Ghana
Card ongoing at various regional offices of the NIA.
“Our research revealed that, Head of Corporate Affairs Ag. of the NIA, Dr. Abudu Abdul-Ganiyu in a press release, announced for the information of
the general public that effective Monday, 19th December 2022; it will offer premium
registration services at its Ashanti, Eastern, and Western Regional offices. These centers
operate in addition to the premium centers at the NIA Head Office and Calbank Head Office
in Accra,” the Coalition noted.
The said release according to the group, indicated that the premium registration centers will offer the following fee-based registration services;
First-time registration and issuance of a Ghana Card – Ghc 280,
replacement of lost, missing, or damaged cards – Ghc 110, update of a personal record that requires the printing of a new card – Ghc 110.
The Coalition considers this selective and a commercialization of the Ghana card acquisition, adding “it is a tool for marginalizing majority of Ghanaians from its national use and benefits thereof.”
The group further observed that Ghanaians who even make efforts to move to regional offices of the NIA seeking to register were unable to do so with several excuses from officials, including network challenges and lack of printing cards among other flimsy excuses.
“What becomes of the poor Ghanaian who does not have money to register for the card?
– What becomes of the people leaving in the hintherlands and do not have access to regional capitals for the registration exercise? the Coalition lamented.
The group called on the EC, to consider the far reaching disadvantages of it’s entrenched position and to rescind the decision towards a consolidation of the country’s fledgling democracy going forward.
Read full statement here
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