The list of 56,000 ‘NHIS voters’ presented to the Supreme Court by the Electoral Commission (EC) is fictitious, Executive Director of IMANI Ghana Franklin Cudjoe has said.
According to the founder of the Ghana-based think tank and research institute, the figure is “hugely questionable and too low”.
“I am not a clairvoyant, neither do I possess any supernatural powers, but this figure is just a juju lotto number,” he said in a discussion on The Big Issue on Citi FM on Saturday July 2, 2016.
The EC submitted the list upon an order from the Supreme Court to do so within six days following a return to court by Mr Abu Ramadan of the People’s National Convention (PNC) and one Evans Nimako to seek a clarification of the court’s May 5 ruling, which was subjected to several interpretations by the parties involved in the matter.
The court on May 5 directed the EC to delete from the register of voters the names of the dead, minors, as well as all voters who registered using their National Health Insurance Cards as a national ID. The same court had ruled almost two years ago that the NHIS cards were invalid for voter registration.
The plaintiffs and their lawyers have contested the validity of the list, saying there needs to have been more than 56,000 of such registrants. They described the list as fake and fictitious.
Mr Cudjoe told host Umaru Sanda Amadu that: “I seriously doubt this 56,000 figure, I will be very surprised if the EC is able to provide the entire list because I have doubts if they captured this thing electronically, probably they have not even captured it well, so there may be several layers of doubt for the Supreme Court to actually demand another layer of enquiry.”
Mr. Cudjoe holds the opinion that as of 2012, the number of people who had registered for the NHIS card across the country was approximately 8.9 million.
He further explained that due to the convenience of procuring an NHIS card as compared to a driver’s licence and other means of national identification, there was the possibility that a huge number of people registered for the voter’s identification card with an NHIS card.
Again, to him, there are not many people who possess driver’s licences, especially in the rural areas, and if one considered people who even registered by using guarantors, the number quoted by the EC would still be too low. He felt a figure of at least three million would be more acceptable than what was presented to the court.