The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu has expressed disappointment in the ruling of the High Court which gives the National Identification Authority (NIA) the green light to proceed with Ghana Card registration in n the Eastern Region.
According to him, the ruling effectively gives others the right of way to flout the President’s directive on banning public gatherings.
Addressing the press in Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu disagreed with the judgement of the court.
“I am profoundly disappointed in the ruling of the court not giving meaning and support to the directive of Nana Akufo-Addo that Ghanaians not more than 25 for the purposes of public gathering should gather in order to protect human lives and to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus threat.
“To hear that the court has ruled that the National Identification Authority can continue with mass registration will mean that they are giving the license to public gatherers and that defeats the purpose of the President’s directive hence citizens will be better justified to disrespect the President’s directive. I am disappointed by that ruling. It means that we are prioritizing elections at the peril of Ghanaian lives. That can only be disappointing.”
The High Court in Accra on Monday dismissed an injunction application seeking to stop the NIA from continuing with its registration in the Eastern Region.
Kevow Mark-Oliver and Emmanuel Akumatey Okrah sued the NIA and succeeded in securing an interlocutory injunction preventing the NIA from going ahead with the exercise.
The NIA subsequently suspended the Ghana Card registration exercise in the Eastern Region due to the injunction.
The exercise was suspended “pending the final determination of the application,” the NIA noted in a statement.
Before the suspension, the NIA insisted that its decision to carry on with the Ghana Card registration exercise in the Eastern Region was not in violation of the directives concerning public gatherings.
This was despite reports indicating that citizens looking to register for the card were massing at some registration centres in contravention of expert advice for curbing the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Observers also criticized the NIA for continuing with the exercise .
The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), for example, said the continuation of the registration was a breach of international and regional human rights instruments.
CHRAJ in a statement also said the NIA’s actions were a disregard of the existing World Health Organization (WHO) precautionary measures aimed at containing and combating the novel coronavirus.
The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) also complained that the continuation of the exercise defeated the precautionary measures declared by the state to combat the pandemic.