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Revolutionary development claims about Ghana Card uncritical and wrongheaded – Bright Simons

Ghana Card 631x424 1 File photo: Ghana Card

Thu, 11 Aug 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Vice President of IMANI Africa, Bright Simons, has suggested that the much-touted Ghana Card may not bring the needed development as envisioned by government officials, particularly Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia.

In an August 10 Twitter post, the policy analyst said it was not wrong for the national identity card to be promoted but said indicated that it was ‘uncritical and wrongheaded’ for the card to be ascribed a messianic status for development and transformation.

He argued that other African countries have had a national ID card for a long time compared to Ghana’s relatively short time of issuing the cards but have seen no transformation.

“Look, there is nothing wrong with promoting the Ghana Card. But the messianic claims about its supposed revolutionary devt impact is uncritical & wrongheaded. Many African countries have had electronic ID cards for decades. They haven't been transformed,” Bright Simons tweeted.

Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has recently been at the forefront hailing the benefits of the Ghana Card.

While speaking at the launch of two new high-level information technology programmes at the Accra Business School at Baatsona in Accra, he said he will choose the Ghana Card over a thousand interchanges in the country’s quest for development.

According to him, Ghanaians do not fully appreciate the digitalisation drive by the government but the government is poised to pursue the agenda as a vehicle to transform the economy.

“Some of the problems go back to independence. We inherited a problem of no unique national identification system. This has been with us since independence. We had implemented a national identification system for the Ghana Card. Today, we have 16 million Ghanaians with unique identities, and that is a major transformation. A lot of people sometimes do not appreciate its impact.

“If you gave me 1000 interchanges and the Ghana Card, I would choose the Ghana Card because it has more impact,” Dr Mahamudu Bawumia said.

The comment by the Vice President sparked social media conversation with many lampooning him.

But addressing participants at the Civil Service Awards ceremony on Friday, July 29, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia revisited his "I'll choose Ghana card over 1,000 interchanges" comments again and tried to explain further.

“It seems my Ghana card statement was misinterpreted. I want people to think about it critically. For the first time in our history, we have a unique identity system which is biometric and so we can uniquely identify every individual whether they are alive or dead.

“With this, the case of ghost names on our public sector system will become a thing of the past...at National Service Scheme we found 14,000 ghost workers saving annually 114 million Ghana cedis just from one institution because we look for unique identity. Just a couple of days ago SSNIT reported finding 27,000 ghost pensioners and they were being paid 327 million cedis a year.”

Dr. Bawumia has also been claiming that the Ghana Card can be used as a travel document (E-passport).

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Source: www.ghanaweb.com
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