The New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament for Dormaa East, Paul Twum-Barimah, has urged the National Identification Authority (NIA) to immediately come out with plans on how it will distribute the 640,000 Ghana cards it has printed but yet to give to the owners.
He said since Ghanaians and other nationals who had registered for the Ghana cards needed the cards for business and other transactions, the authority must let the people know where they could go to collect the cards.
“The NIA is now the pivot that we are all revolving around in terms of our voters’ registration, hence the authority must stop blaming the lack of money as a hurdle in distributing printed Ghana cards,” he said
Speaking in an interview with the Daily Graphic, Mr Twum-Barimah said “You have 640,000 Ghana cards sitting in your office and you are telling us that it is all about money when you do not know how to distribute those cards.
“They should come out with a proper plan and tell us how we are going to get the 640,000 people to get hold of the cards,” he said.
Mr Twum-Barimah recounted that when the NIA boss Prof. Ken Attafuah came to Parliament, he told the House that by the year 2024, it would have registered 19 million people who would have attained the voting age.
“So, if the authority says they have issued 17 million Ghana cards, with over 640,000 printed cards sitting in their office and no one is coming for them, then there is a problem.’’
He suggested that the authority had several options at its disposal to strategically distribute the cards to the owners.
“With the 640,000 cards that are sitting in their office, is the NIA telling us that if they go to Graphic and other media outlets to announce areas where cards can be collected, the people will not go for them?
“Are they telling us that those media houses will tell them they should pay some huge money before they will make such announcements for them? It is not about money and we must tell the NIA to be serious,” he said.
Urging the authority to sit up, the MP further said “We need to tell the NIA people that you do not need money to distribute the 640,000 cards that you have”.