The Supreme Court has ordered the Electoral Commission, Ghana (EC) to accept the existing voter identification cards as one of the basic documents for the upcoming registration, counsel for the plaintiff has claimed.
General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Johnson Asiedu Nketia also told journalists after judgement on Thursday that the existing voter IDs will now be accepted by the EC for the exercise, which starts on Tuesday, June 30.
“We feel vindicated because the court itself in an earlier ruling had clearly stated that the possession of an existing voter’s ID card means the holder is a citizen of Ghana,” Mr Asiedu Nketia said.
The NDC filed the suit against the EC and the Attorney General over the compilation of a new register for the December 7 elections.
The largest opposition party has maintained that the existing register is credible for any elections in Ghana.
The NDC therefore had initially sought to restrain the Commission from compiling a new register but got persuaded to rather seek to stop the election-management body from rejecting existing voter ID cards as proof of citizenship in future registrations.
This resulted in the NDC choosing one of the two reliefs it sought from the apex court of the land. It withdrew the relief opposing the whole exercise and pursued the acceptance of the existing voter ID cards as breeder document for the registration.
Judgement was adjourned after a native of Breman-Kokoso in the Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa District of the Central Region, Mark Takyi-Banson, also challenged the decision of the Commission to exclude birth certificates as breeder documents.
The Court consolidated the suits and on Thursday, June 25 gave judgement.
In a unanimous decision, the Court gave the Commission the green light to compile a new register.
But there was confusion about granting NDC’s relief on the inclusion of the existing voter IDs for the exercise.
While Mr Asiedu Nketia said the Court granted that relief, the defendants said the Court dismissed all the demands of the plaintiff.
It, however, became clear after 3news.com sighted the exact judgement, which enjoins the EC to go by CI 126 in the compilation of a new register, scheduled to begin on Tuesday and end on Thursday, August 6.
The existing voter ID card will, therefore, not be a valid document for proof of one’s citizenship.
Only a Ghanaian passport or a Ghana Card will be accepted as breeder documents. In the absence of those two documents, two guarantors can vouch for the citizenship of a prospective eligible applicant.