House briefing on CI by the EC is premature
House briefing on CI by the EC is premature - Majority Leader
House briefing on CI by the EC is premature – Majority Leader
The Minority has called for the Electoral Commission (EC) to brief the Committee as a whole on its intention to lay a new Constitutional Instrument (C.I.) on the use of the Ghana card as the only document for the continuous voter registration process, but the Majority Leader has referred to those calls as premature.
There is no need for concern, according to Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, since the next general election won’t take place until the fourth quarter of 2024.
The National Identification Authority (NIA) is now working on registering Ghana cards; if there are any delays, the House will be properly informed, he added.
After the First Deputy Minority Chief Whip, Ibrahim Ahmed, alerted the House to a C.I. that was now being reviewed by the Subsidiary Legislation Committee, Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu rejected the call.
He said that after 21 sitting days, the pre-laid document will become a law.
He informed the House that according to the C.I., the EC wants to make the Ghana card the only document required for registration on the new voters register.
The MP for Banda remembered how NIA representatives had arrived in the House on Thursday to brief members on their interaction with the EC as well as the difficulties in obtaining money and a stable network that would allow for the Ghana Card registration process.
Since the pre-laying of the C.I. was not disclosed to the House, Mr. Ahmed requested that the leader of government business arrange for the EC to appear before the House adjourned.
When the EC briefs us as a Committee of the Whole, he said, “we then assess how we can handle any obstacles so that, when the time comes, we will not be presented with contentious questions of distrust.”
Mr. Ahmed said that the House may put pressure on the government to provide financing to the authority based on the aim of the EC if if funding was the issue preventing the Ghana card exercise, since the supplemental budget is expected to be given to the House next week.
He referenced a recent Supreme Court decision that mandated that the EC may only utilize the Ghana Card if a C.I. was filed.