The Electoral Commission (EC) has assured Ghanaians that it has no intention to use the Ghana Card as a source of identification for the 2024 general elections.
It said it would continue to issue the voters identification cards which would be used for the elections.
The Deputy Chairman of the EC, Dr Eric Bossman Asare, in an interview with the Daily Graphic corrected certain misconceptions in the public that said the EC intended to use the Ghana Card on voting day and, therefore, wanted to create a new register hence the decision to accept the Ghana Card as the only means of identification for registration of new voters onto the national register.
“We are not going to use the Ghana Card for voting. No we are not going to use it for voting. The Ghana Card is only for registration as a new voter and when you register, we will issue you with our voter’s card. So let’s encourage our children from 16 years to go for their Ghana Card so that by 2024, when that child is 18 before 60 days to the elections, he or she can walk to our district office or constituency and register for his or her voter’s ID”, he indicated.
The draft constitutional instrument entitled: Public Elections (Registration of Voters) Regulations, 2021 has sparked controversy, especially the section that sought to make the Ghana Card the sole form of identification for eligible voters who wanted to get onto the national register.
Decision by IPAC
The decision to use the Ghana Card, Dr Bossman Asare said, was agreed on by the various political parties at an EC meeting with the Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) .
It was concluded that since the Ghana Card could be acquired at age 15, those who were going to turn18 should be encouraged to get their cards and then go to their district office where they were located and register and be added onto the voters register, he indicated.
However, the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has raised issue with the C.I stating that it has never been party to any consultation or meeting in whatsoever form that agreed to make the Ghana Card the sole identification document for the upcoming limited voter registration exercise.
The party has, therefore, served notice that it will use all legitimate means to oppose the decision by the Electoral Commission (EC) to use the Ghana Card as the sole identification document for the voter registration.
Aside the NDC, a former chair of the commission, Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, has also argued that any attempt by the EC to use the Ghana Card as the sole document for voter registration would lead to the disenfranchisement of millions of Ghanaians for which reason the C.I should be looked at again before Parliament gave approval.