Use Voter IDs for Ghana Card registration - Kufuor backs NDC

Use Voter IDs for Ghana Card registration - Kufuor backs NDC

- Former President Kufuor has backed calls for the inclusion of the Voters ID in the documents for acquiring a Ghana Card

- He made the statement while taking his turn to register for a Ghana Card on Tuesday

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has has waded into the controversy surrounding the documents one needs in order to acquire a Ghana Card.

There has been a raging debate on the the requirements needed to register for a Ghana Card which effectively makes one a Ghanaian citizen or not.

Speaking to journalists at his residence after officials of the National Identification Authority (NIA) went there to register him on Tuesday former President Kufuor minced no words as he said "...the Voters' ID has to be part of it."

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"It's been a rigorous exercise. Almost for the past two hours, which means it could take a lot of time", especially "when you are going to do it for over 30 million people

"Documents that will help identify a citizen as a citizen will be sovereign authority in him or her so if your voter ID is not incorporated", then "how would you say you also have the 'Kokromoti power' (franchise) [which] will make and unmake a government?", he stated.

The National Identity Register (NIR) law excludes the use of Voter IDs for registration and there have been calls for an amendment to include them.

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Leading this campaign is the leadership of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and they have received a massive boost as former President Kufuor has also called for the inclusion of Voter IDs.

Last week, the president said claims by former President John Mahama and the Minority in parliament that using only birth certificates and passports as base documents for the registration will de-nationalise over 20 million Ghanaians, is unfortunate.

Former President John Mahama described the exclusion of the Voters ID as an attempt by the Akufo-Addo government to disenfranchise and de-nationalise millions of Ghanaians using “illogical” criteria for the registration and acquisition of the Ghana Card.

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Speaking at the NDC's Unity Walk in the Volta Region last week, Mahama said:“This is a deliberate attempt to de-nationalise some of our people and we shall not accept it. We will use every legitimate instrument that is possible under a democracy to ensure that every Ghanaian is able to register.

“If you go to one of the villages in my constituency [Bole] and let me use an example, Hodiyiri, it’s a small community in Bole Bamboi, perhaps, nobody in Hodiyiri has a birth certificate or passport so for the 300 or 400 people in Hodiyiri with no birth certificate or passport to prove that they are Ghanaians, how are you going to register those people in Hodiyiri?”

But the NIA has insisted it will use only the two documents to establish citizenship of registrants for the Ghana Card.

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It will be interesting how the NIA and government in general will react to Kufuor's call.

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