The National Identification Authority (NIA) has indefinitely suspended the mass registration and issuance of a national identity card to Ghanaians after it failed Monday morning to begin the much publicized exercise.
Hundreds of personnel from the various security agencies in the Greater Accra Region as well as those from selected institutions including the Jubilee House who formed queues to register at their various centres Monday were left disappointed.
Monday’s failure becomes the fifth time the Authority has missed out on its planned dates to begin the registration exercise which the government has prioritised as one of the ways to formalize the country’s economy.
A statement issued Monday evening apologized to personnel from the selected institutions that were to be registered from May 28 to June 8 in the Greater Accra Region for the inconvenience the delay may have caused.
It blamed the ‘no-show’ for the exercise on a technical which it said has affected the NIA’s system.
“The National Identification System has suffered a technical hitch which has affected the NIA’s ability to commence roll-out as scheduled,” it explained in the statement and said details of the “technical difficulties” would be communicated to the general public in due course.
“Our technical team is working fervently to resolve the issue for registration to begin. Under the circumstance registration was suspended today until the problem is completely resolved” it announced.
The Authority has meanwhile assured the affected institutions that efforts are being made to cover any lost time by deploying enough registration officials and equipment to undertake the exercise.
Executive Director of the NIA, Prof. Ken Attafuah told TV3 last week that Ghana is expected to spend 1.22 billion dollars in the next 15 years on the exercise.
The Ghana Card project, which seeks to modedrnise and formalize the Ghanaian economy, was one of the campaign promises of the New Patriotic Party.
Government has said it will in the establishment of a credible national database and serve as the primary ID card that citizens will use to access all services in the country, including even travelling within the West African sub-region.
When fully implemented the Ghana Card will be the only valid ID for application for a bank account, passport, telephone number, property acquisition, driver’s license and many more.
By Stephen Kwabena Effah|3news.com|Ghana