Mr Elorm Kwabena Osei-Bonsu, the Hohoe District Registration Officer (DRO) of the National Identification Authority (NIA), says it is illegal for Ghanaians to assist non-citizens to acquire the ECOWAS Identity Card, popularly referred to as the Ghana Card.
He said the Authority had made provision for foreigners to acquire the card appropriately and, therefore, should not be presented as Ghanaians by citizens, when they arrived at offices of the Authority for the cards.
Mr Osei-Bonsu, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA), said any Ghanaian who engaged in assisting a foreigner by presenting documents to serve as their guarantor had committed an offence under the National Identity Register Act 2008, Act 750.
He noted that the Authority between November 2021 to the end of June this year, had registered more than 3,000 people, while the mass registration between 2019 and 2020 registered about 60,000 people.
Mr Osei-Bonsu said the age group of people currently turning up to be registered were those who turned 15 years as well as people, who could not register during the mass registration exercise.
He said the Office was facing a challenge of shortage of cards and appealed to the public to be patient and ignore rumour that the cards were being held in order to extort money from them.
Mr Osei-Bonsu urged citizens to reach out to offices of the Authority to ask relevant questions and enquiries and not rely on hearsays and also be able to prove when they suspected foul play in the registration of people.
He noted that card holders who had misplaced their cards or had their cards defaced and want them to be replaced must go to the police to obtain an extract and present such at any regional offices for new cards at a cost of GH₵30.00.
Mr Osei-Bonsu noted that card bearers who had a typographical error and wanted them corrected must also present the available documents before they were registered and issued with cards for the process for a new card to be initiated.
He noted that issues regarding change of name as well as adding and removing names were peculiar and would be addressed at the national level at the Authority’s EL-Wak stadium centre in Accra.