Friday, February 6, 2009


THE National Identification Authority (NIA) has temporarily suspended its activities till after the transition period.
By its schedule of activities at the start of the mass registration exercise for a national register of Ghanaians and legally resident citizens in the country, as well as identification cards, the exercise started in July 2008 and was expected to end in May 2009.
However, the Head of Public Affairs of the NIA, Ms Bertha Dzeble, said the NIA had put the exercise on hold until the transition period was over, as its activities were tied to the smooth functioning of the government bureaucratic system.
In an interview, she also said the authority would endeavour, under the current transitional period, to rectify delays in the payment of allowances owed some 6,200 people recruited for the mass registration exercise in the Eastern Region since November 2008.
By its schedule for deployment for the mass registration exercise, the NIA began the exercise in July 2008 in the Central Region.
Subsequently, the exercise was undertaken in the Western and Eastern regions, with a break in December for the general election.
However, the protracted nature of the elections that witnessed a presidential run-off on December 28, 2008 and in the Tain Constituency of the Brong Ahafo Region on January 2, 2009 has seen a disruption in the schedule.
The mass registration exercise should have resumed on December 15, 2008 and ended in May 2009 to cover the Volta, Greater Accra, Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper West and Upper East regions.
With the directive from the new government to all ministries, departments and state institutions to hold on and not take any major decisions before the appointment of heads for the ministries and departments, the work of the NIA and its mass registration activities are on hold.
This is particularly so because the mass registration exercise involves the deployment of about 6,200 people, logistics and materials.
Ms Dzeble gave the assurance that as soon as the NIA, which is under the Presidency, was given the go ahead, new schedules would be announced.
She added that grievances on allowances by those who had been recruited for the registration exercise in the Eastern Region would soon be sorted out.
District officers of the NIA compile a list of those recruited who have actually worked for the period.
The list is then sent to the NIA, checked and sent to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning through the Castle treasury system.
It is then sent to the Bank of Ghana (BOG) after the necessary checks and then to the Apex Bank, which credits the various commercial banks in the districts with what is due each person recruited for the exercise.
She pointed out that those checks and processes were necessary but could not be completed in November 2008 because of the general election.

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