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Sunday, February 5, 2023

Afriyie-Ankrah sends important message to EC over forms of identification

Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah

Director of Elections for the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah, has appealed to the Electoral Commission (EC) to make provision for the use of other national identification documents to register to vote.

He said the EC should allow persons with passports and birth certificates to register and vote in the 2024 elections.

Speaking in an interaction on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, he said if this approach is used, it will make the voter registration process for prospective voters easier.

“Over the years since 1993 provision is made that apart from the primary document which in this case will be the NIA card, there should be some provision for other documents and in the past, it was the driver’s license, Ghanaian passport and guarantor system,” he said.

His comments come after the Deputy Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC) in charge of Corporate Services, warned prospective voters to obtain a Ghana Card since that will be the only requirement for registering to vote in the 2024 elections.

Speaking in an interview on The Pulse on Wednesday, Dr Bossman Asare said without a Ghana Card, one will not be registered to vote.

This, he said is because the Ghana Card has made an impact in society with almost 17 million Ghanaians registered for it.

“The Commission in collaboration with our partners took the decision that now let us have the Ghana Card as the main requirement.

“So what this means is that as soon as you acquire your Ghana Card with a continuous registration, you just go to our district office where you are located then you go and register and your name will be put on the roll of voters,” he said

Reacting to the caution, Mr Afriyie-Ankrah stated that the EC is overly reliant on the National Identification Authority when it has no control over the functions of the NIA.

“What is the guarantee that at the end of the day by the time they open the limited registration to vote, people who have turned 18 have received their Ghana Card,?” he quizzed.

According to him, with all the challenges faced by the NIA which have not been addressed, he cannot fathom why the electoral body is insisting that, “it is only the NIA card that would be used.”

He contested the statistics provided by the EC on persons issued with the Ghana Card.

“What we have is that as of July, based on NIA statistics, 16 million 654 thousand and 72 people have been enrolled, 13 million 317 thousand 612 have been issued and 3 million and 23 thousand 918 have not been issued with their Ghana Card so there is a challenge,” he said.

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