According to the magazine, whiles it sees “nothing wrong” with improving and enhancing the accuracy of the electoral roll, any bid by the current administration to “undercut NDC strongholds” under the guise of the EC’s use of the Ghana Card as the “basis for a new voters’ roll” - because the current register is bloated with foreigners, mostly from Togo, who, it is believed, are more sympathetic to the NDC - might inflame passions and ignite a political conflagration.
In June this year, the National Identification Authority (NIA) commenced the registration process for citizens working in specialized institutions or Key Influencers as the Authority puts it. The NIA has so far registered officials at the Presidency, Parliament, former presidents excluding Jerry Rawlings as well as some government institutions giving out over 80,000 cards within the last four months.
A few days into the exercise, however, the opposition NDC, at a meeting by its Functional Executive Committee (FEC) took a decision – which was later communicated to the media by General Secretary Johnson Asiedu Nketiah - not to participate in the ongoing National Identification Card (Ghana Card) registration until the party’s demand that the Voter’s ID card is included as one of the requirements for registration, is met.
Prior to that, the Minority in Parliament, had already boycotted the registration claiming the exercise will disenfranchise and de-nationalize several Ghanaians because only birth certificates and passports will be used as identification for registration. That impasse is yet to be resolved.
“There is nothing wrong with cleaning up a voters’ register…but it is quite dangerous for Akufo-Addo’s government to use the Ghana Card to undercut NDC strongholds and then turn around to have the EC use the Ghana Card as the basis for a new voters’ roll so that the NDC will not have the numbers to vote for them in future elections,” the Steve Mallory edited magazine said.
Touching on the popularity of the current President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the AfricaWatch magazine believed it has waned rather significantly, largely because of his inability to deliver the numerous electoral promises, most especially the ‘One-District-One-Factory’.
This, the magazine said, has rendered the President highly strung and edgy as Ghanaians are becoming gradually disenchanted.
…“uneasiness is thus increasing as more people are coming to grips with the stark fact that some of the key president’s campaign promises may not materialize at all, such as his plan to build one factory in each of the country’s 216 constituencies during his first term in office, a scheme he proudly called ‘One District, One Factory’”.
“…though, many questioned where on earth the funds would come from for such an enormous undertaking, he promised at the time that it would alleviate poverty and create more jobs. None of it has happened.
“Hope in Akufo-Addo’s presidency is therefore turning into doubt and beginning to grow into disillusionment. This, naturally, is making the president become nervous and putting him on the defensive.”
Africawatch, which boasts the catchline; the Pan-African Magazine of Choice, further claimed the “honesty” of the president is also “being called into question by some of the people who voted for him”, as his only notable achievement to date, which has become something of a mantra for party communicators; the Free Senior High School (SHS) policy, appears “botched”.
“Even the implementation of the promised Free Senior High program has somehow been botched, because the government rushed it without any proper consultation and planning…now that his honesty is being called into question by some of the people who voted for him, Akufo-Addo is becoming increasingly unpopular. That has made him nervous and he has already started covertly scheming to bolster his chances for re-election in 2020,” the Africawatch Magazine said.