The Head of Corporate Affairs at the National Identification Authority (NIA) has announced that several foreigners have been prosecuted for impersonating Ghanaians in order to obtain the Ghana Card.
Abudu Abdul Ganiu says that although these people “provided real documents, some later interviews showed that they were not Ghanaians”.
He said this when answering questions about purchasing the Ghana card for the ongoing re-registration of the SIM card with Joy FM Great morning show on Tuesday.
The Ghana Card is the only form of identification that is accepted for SIM card registration by citizens.
The Ministry of Communications has warned that SIM cards that are not registered by the end of March 2022 will be blocked.
After a delay in acquiring the National Card for the SIM registration process, some Ghanaians are reported to be applying for the card again at another registration center.
However, Mr. Ganiu has reiterated that double registration is a criminal offense.
He mentioned that the NIA had already gone to court to prosecute those found guilty.
“We persecute people because it amounts to breaking the law. We went to court with a lot of people for various registration crimes.
“I know that a lot of people are already in jail just because they passed some documents even though they were real documents, later some interviews showed that they are not Ghanaians,” said Ganiu.
He stated that the only legitimate reason for people to reapply for the national card is to receive an official notice from the authority stating the need to go through the process again.
“Only when you get a signal that after our decision we have come to the conclusion that you probably have to re-register, which has to be official, you don’t have to,” he suggested.
When asked about the need for Ghana cardholders to go through the biometric exercise for the SIM re-registration process again, Mr Ganiu said it was necessary to verify the identity of its holders.
“I can take your Ghana card and go through the SIM registration process and at the end of the day a number will be registered in your name, but I would be the one using it… So [biometric data] was shared with the telecommunications providers, which is just one way of validation.
“If your card is on the table and I select it, I can go through the process. When choosing your biometrics, you make sure that you are the person who went through this process. It’s just another level of verification, ”he explained.