Ongoing NIA exercise amounts to causing financial loss - Kofi Akpaloo
The Founder and Leader of the Liberal Party of Ghana (LPG), Mr Kofi Percival Akpaloo, has posited that the ongoing national identification exercise amounts to causing financial loss to the state
to him, he did not see the need to invest USD$1.2 billion of the taxpayer’s money into a needless venture.
Mr Akpaloo’s stance is that the database of the Electoral Commission (EC) provided ample foundation for national and that a new database was irrelevant.
“I don’t see the need to invest over USD$1.2 billion to build a new database because we have the EC database,” he stressed.
Mr Akpaloo said this in an interview with the Daily Graphic on his view of the ongoing national identification exercise which had attracted much debate within the political circles of the country.
Explaining his stance, Mr Akpaloo said the EC had the data of all those above 18 years living in Ghana.
More so, he stated that banks and other public institutions relied on the voter identity card to identify people in business transactions and wondered why the National Identification Authority (NIA) could not rely on that.
He, was, therefore of the view that it would be a better option to integrate the EC data and update it, stressing that “instead of building a new system, we should adopt the EC database and ”.
Mr Akpaloo called on the NIA and Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to desist from spending scarce resources on acquiring a new database because at the end of the day, what the country was actually looking for was the means to identify Ghanaians using unique ID numbers.
The premise of his argument was that basically if one was not a Ghanaian, one could not vote so by inference, everyone with a voter ID card was a Ghanaian.
In the view of the LPG, it is personal interest and not national interest that is pushing for spending $1.2 billion for the entire 15-year project, saying: “It simply does not make sense because at the end of the day, what we are looking for is a unique ID for everyone.”
He said in the US, for example, every citizen had a unique social security number that identified them, while in the Republic of Ireland, they had the Public Personal Service (PPS) number that was used to identify citizens.