Prof. Ken Attafuah Chief Executive of the National Identification Authority (NIA) has admitted that some of his staff are frustrating the Ghana Card registration exercise in the Ashanti Region by extorting money and also taking bribes from individuals.
Since the Ghana Card exercise begun, there have been several reports of some staff capitalising on the desperation of individuals to get their cards, by extorting money and also accepting bribes to fasten the processes for them.
Many have complained that they have witnessed others paying money to bypass them in queues and that sometimes end their interest in continuing the process.
Prof. Attafuah has vowed to crack down on the act of extortion and bribery, he has warned staff engaged in the act to desist from it or face his wrath.
“The system has no issues but the processes by which we Ghanaians are conducting ourselves is not the best. Beginning with my staff who I have heard are engaging in certain acts of extortion and bribery, creating artificial shortages, exploiting people because of their desire to get the card and this leads to painful experiencing of putting Ghanaians through needless hardship. People queue overnight and when they get there some of my staff exhibit disruptive conducts and this puts some of them off,” he lamented.
He added that he least expected the challenges the Ghana card exercise is going through in the Ashanti Region because the region has seen an increase in equipment and personnel and he has called on the residents to support NIA so they complete the exercise.
“The saddest part is also that the complaints coming from Ashanti Region are huge, yet we have put about 5,400 machines there and we have so many people trained to do the work much better than any other region, In other regions we had just about 1,500 machines, so there should be a much better exercise,” he added.
The NIA yesterday announced that they have extended the mass registration exercise in the Ashanti Region from 10-16 January 2020.
The Ghana Card is a national identity card that is issued by the Ghanaian authorities to Ghanaian citizens – both resident and non-resident, and legally and permanently resident foreign nationals. It is proof of identity, citizenship and residence of the holder.