The Member of Parliament for Tamale Central, Ibrahim Murtala Muhammed says the Electoral Commission’s quest for a Constitutional Instrument (CI) to make the Ghana Card the sole document for the registration of voters is baseless.
According to him, when the EC appeared before a subsidiary legislative committee months ago for the pre-laying stage of the CI, it had no evidence to support its claim that foreigners had acquired birth certificates and Ghanaian passports.
This is one of the three reasons the EC is currently pushing for the use of the Ghana Card for voter registration.
Although he acknowledged that the EC has the mandate to introduce the new CI, the legislator said the only motive behind it is mischief.
He said the EC’s quest must be backed by evidence and in this case, the number of foreigners who had acquired the birth certificate and the Ghanaian passport.
Recounting the evidence the EC presented, he said, “for months, they came with eight names out of 32 million, that these are the people. We asked, over 32 million Ghanaians and only eight people are able to acquire a Ghanaian passport or birth certificate illegally?”
The logic, he said is outrageous since the EC has not been able to prove that the said list of people had been prosecuted, unlike the NIA which prosecuted foreigners for acquiring the Ghana card.
He made these comments on JoyNews’ The Pulse on Wednesday.
Mr Muhammed said the committee argued that the number was insignificant with the ratio of the current population, to warrant an amendment.
Responding to the question on whether he heard EC Chair, Jean Mensa say one foreign name or a minor on the electoral row is just too many, he said “how about one foreign name on the acquisition of the Ghana card, I mean that logic if this logic is not wobbly. To be very honest, my three-year-old daughter will not buy this logic.”
Touching more on the logic of the EC, the former Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry, said: “If the argument is that we cannot vouch for the usage of the Ghanaian passport and the Ghanaian birth certificate because there are eight people the EC has identified, there is evidence that non-Ghanaians, the police arrested them and the NIA is prosecuting them, they are more than eight,” he told host, Blessed Sogah.
When queried about the 40,000 names the EC expunged from the register, he explained that “the 40,000 were the names that were expunged as a result of the guarantor system.
“Guarantor system does not necessarily mean those people were foreigners. But the evidence of foreigners who acquired the Ghanaian passport and birth certificate she presented were just eight,” he stressed.
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