The Ghana card should be the only document used to register new voters, according to the People’s National Convention (PNC), because it is authorized by law.
The party’s general secretary, Janet Asana Nabla, stated at a press conference in Accra on Wednesday, August 16, 2022, that new voters have more than two years to obtain a Ghana card and register to vote. She continued, “The age for acquisition of the Ghana card is 16 while that for voter registration is 18, giving a whole two-year margin for new voters to acquire a Ghana card.”
Additionally, Ms. Nabla noted that “no one would be disenfranchised” because “the register will be closed in October 2024.”
“We should also note that one does not need an ID to vote. That is the beauty of biometric registration. Your best ID is your bio data (your fingerprint)”, she specified.
She reiterated, “There will also be no additional mass reregistration as was done after this.
Therefore, there is no concern that a registered voter who does not possess a Ghana card will be removed from the voter list.
In other words, if a person is already included on the register, there is no concern about them losing their voting rights.
“The card bears personal information about the individuals whose identity can be verified at all times. The NIA National Identity System utilises three types of biometric technology for identification purposes.
These are the fingerprints unique to each individual in the form of digitised templates, and facial templates in the form of a digitised colour photo of the cardholder and the iris.
The card contains basic identification information including a photograph of the cardholder, along with a name, date of birth, height, and a personal identification number that has been randomly generated and assigned to the holder and has an expiry date” the statement added.
Read the statement below:
Distinguished party members, Friends from the media, Ladies and Gentlemen, I must first express my sincerest appreciation to you for honouring our invitation to the press conference.
The reason for this conference is to set the record straight on matters of registration of qualified Ghanaians onto the electoral register and the position of the People’s National Convention in the midst of a categorical attempt by some people to, again, create tension over unambiguous electoral laws and some Constitutional Instruments enacted over the years.
Friends from the media, the Electoral Commission of Ghana has placed a draft C.I. titled: Public Regulations 2021, which is expected to regulate the continuous voter registration.
Per the C.I., the EC is seeking to make the Ghana card the sole identification medium for eligible voters who want to get onto the electoral roll.
The C.I has been referred to a Subsidiary Legislation Committee of Parliament and we know by convention, this committee is chaired by a member of the minority group.
THE PNC ASSESSMENT SO FAR
- The Electoral Commission used Ghana card, passport and 2 guarantors in the absence of the other IDs for the 2020 election. That register remains valid. What is upcoming is continuous registration. The EC has not said it is conducting a new registration exercise.
- The EC has assessed and come to a conclusion that most potential new voters will have the Ghana card thereby eliminating the need for calling for either of the previously used multiple identities. Moreover, the guaranteed system can easily be abused in border areas.
- This is a national policy and, like all other systems which have now been changed to register individuals through the Ghana card, the EC is doing same. It’s nothing new and unfounded
- It should be noted that young people coming in have over two years to acquire their Ghana card and register to vote. The age for acquisition of the Ghana card is 16 while that for voter registration is 18, giving a whole two-year margin for new voters to acquire a Ghana card.
Moreover, the register will be closed in October 2024, so, no one will be disenfranchised.
We should also note that one does not need an ID to vote. That is the beauty of biometric registration. Your best ID is your bio data (your fingerprint).
- Again, following this, there will also be no new mass reregistration as was done previously. There is no fear then that a current voter who does not have a Ghana card will be taken off the voter list. In other words, there is no fear of disenfranchisement if the person is already on the register.
- There are no inhibitions or any reason that prevents any citizen who is eligible to vote from securing a Ghana card between now and October 2024 to register on the electoral roll.
Ladies and Gentlemen, it is important at this juncture, for us to recall some important events and legislative processes and decisions that set a clear direction, as to what MUST be the core or sole document for registration and compilation of our electoral roll.