The National Identification Authority (NIA) has announced its readiness to print more Ghana cards since government has settled a GH¢100 million debt owed its creditors.
Printing of the cards was suspended following financial constraints faced by the NIA, thus, more than 3.5 million cards were locked up in a bonded warehouse.
However, appearing before Parliament on Tuesday, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta disclosed that an amount of GH¢20 million has been paid to CalBank following the initial payment of GH¢80 million.
“I think that the main question was about the GH¢100 million to be transferred to CalBank IMS and as has been confirmed by the [Executive] Director for the NIA, we have indeed transferred the GH¢80 million and today with swift instructions the GH¢20 million has also been executed. That is the assurance we want to give that we will continue to work with the programme we have agreed with CalBank,” the Finance Minister noted.
The Electoral Commission (EC) is proposing a new constitutional instrument through which it intends to make the Ghana card the sole identification document for voter registration.
Requiring further clarification on the matter, Parliament summoned the officials of the Electoral Commission, NIA and the Minister of Finance.
Also appearing before Parliament to brief MPs on the activity of the NIA, the Executive Director of the NIA, Professor Kenneth Attafuah, assured that the NIA is prepared to print all outstanding cards per the financial clearance by the Finance Ministry.
He said they are now ready to print more cards to support the EC in executing the Constitutional Instrument (CI) if it’s approved by Parliament.
“The number of cards not yet printed, i.e., persons who have registered, whose records are with NIA but whose cards have not yet been printed, stands at 541,529. This figure represents the financial difficulties we have had lately, beginning approximately in July/August of last year,” he said.
However, Prof. Attafuah has assured Ghanaians that NIA can manage the technology to print more Ghana cards.
“We have the capacity, we have over a thousand functional printers, and we have people who are trained, who are professionals who are sitting at home doing nothing and are anxious to work. We will call those people back to work. With 500 printers, we can print 50,000 cards a day,” he assured.
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