Sole requirement of Ghana Card for voter registration rejected by parliament
A proposal from Ghana’s Electoral Commission to make the national digital ID card the sole document acceptable for voter registration has been rejected by parliament.
The proposal would have eliminated the guarantor system if accepted, but lawmakers in the House asked for the 2023 Constitutional Instrument to be amended and brought back to the legislature with the guarantor reintroduced, GhanaNet reports.
The EC contended that requiring the Ghana Card for voter registration is the best way to improve the credibility of the electoral system.
An opposition party MP noted that there are 3.5 million people in the country who do not yet posses the Ghana Card.
The ruling New Patriotic Party has suggested the Ghana Card can be used as the sole identity document for a range of purposes.
Ultimately, GhanaNet reports, both sides of the House were aligned in rejecting the proposal.
Ghana’s National Identification Authority (NIA), meanwhile, says that it will begin distributing more than 541,000 Ghana Cards to applicants who applied since last July and have not yet received them, according to Business Ghana.
The government released 100 million Ghanaian cedis (approximately US$8.9 million) to clear the backlog in Ghana Card issuance. The money has gone to CalBank PLC to pay off debts, after which blank cards were released for printing.