The Minority in Parliament is demanding the immediate withdrawal of the threat for all SIM cards not re-registered by March 2022 to be de-activated.
According to Deputy Ranking Member on the Communications Committee, Sam George, the legislation that backs SIM registration does not make the Ghana Card, the sole card for purposes of registration.
The re-registration of SIM cards with the Ghana Card started on October 1, 2021.
Addressing the press in Parliament, Sam George suggested the use of passports, Driver’s Licences, and Voters ID cards as part of identification for the registration process.
“The current legislation that backs SIM registration in Ghana is the Ll 2006 passed by Parliament in 2011. This legislation saw the registration that happened in 2012. This Legislation Instrument does not mandate the linkage of the Ghana Card to activate SIM Cards.”
“The National Identification Authority Act, 2006 (Act 707) and Ll 2111 which introduces the use of the Ghana Card as the principal document for registration of SIM Cards and Bank Accounts amongst others cannot be applied retrospectively to SIM Cards that were registered legally and legitimately under the existing LI 2006. Section 7 of LI 2111 makes the use of the Ghana Card mandatory, but does not make it the sole card for the purposes of registration.”
Meanwhile, amidst complaints and questions over why passports and other ID cards are being allowed for identification in the SIM re-registration exercise, Professor Attafuah said passports lack the credibility of Ghana Cards.
“A passport is a primary document for establishing your citizenship and eligibility to travel across borders, but…there is a limit,” he said in an interview.
Prof. Attafuah also noted that the Ghana Card registration process provided evidence of why passports could not fully be trusted.
“During the mass registration, there were people who went to registration centres with Ghana passports but were denied the right to register, because, upon interrogation, it was found that they were not Ghanaians.”
“It can be found to be procured through improper means, and you cannot rely on it,” the NIA boss added.
Prof. Attefuah also added that over 15 million Ghanaians have so far been registered for their Ghana Card representing 84.3% of the population aged 15 and above.
“At the end of the day, we have actually registered 84.3% of the population aged 15 and above. So in that sense, we have exceeded the target that was set by the governing board of NIA. It is also the case that of those who are 15 years and above, there are still some who did not register, but those who registered and do not have their card will have them soon.”