Provide sustainable ID system – Pianim to Govt

An economist Kwame Pianim has urged the government to be a more serious in getting a sustainable and verifiable Identification system in the country.

He has asked the government to resource the birth and death registry to ensure that all persons in the country are given proper identification.

His comments come after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said starting April 1, 2021, all national identification numbers will become Tax Identification Numbers (TIN).

Delivering the State of the Nation Address (SONA 2021) to Parliament, the President stated that formalising the informal sector is key to the growth of the country’s economy, as only a small section of the population is registered with the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) with their Tax Identification Numbers (TINs) and with SSNIT for social security.

“Mr. Speaker, after four years in office, I am happy to state that there has been more progress in formalising the Ghanaian economy than there was in the previous 60 years since independence.

“For the first time, we have enrolled 15.5 million people onto the National ID card system, and we will complete the process this year. From 1st April, and this is not an April fool’s prank, all National ID numbers will become Tax Identification Numbers,” he told the House on Tuesday.

The President continued, “In so doing, the number of people registered by GRA for tax purposes will increase from the current 3 million to 15.5 million. I should recall that at the end of 2016, only 750,000 people had TIN numbers. The increase to 15.5 million in just four years is simply phenomenal.”

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Speaking in an interview with TV3’s Etornam Sey on Wednesday March 24, Mr Pianim said “I think that we should be a little more serious about getting sustainable, verifiable national identification systems.

“I think trying to take the voters register and the national identification register and think that you have a solid base for expanding the tax base may not be correct.

“We should move gradually, build the birth and death registry and then gradually develop a national identification programme.”

By Laud Nartey||Ghana