According to Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, everything is in place for the issuance of National Identification numbers, also known as Ghana Card numbers, to newborn babies in Ghana.
He explained that the issuing became successful when the databases of the Births and Deaths Registry, the National Identification Authority, and the Ghana Health Service were successfully integrated.
He also announced that, following a successful test run of the system, a Ghana Card number was issued to a newborn baby on Friday, July 21.
The Vice President made the announcement on Saturday, July 22, 2023.
“The work of integrating the databases has been completed, The full test was done yesterday, and i am happy to say that the first Ghana Card number for a baby was issued yesterday.
“So in the next month or two, all babies born in Ghana, once they take them to Weigh In, will be issued the Ghana Card number and also get their Birth Certificate Identification number at the same time, because the two databases are talking to each other. The nationality of the parents will be established as part of the process.”
“This is very transformational,” Dr Bawumia said.
He added that newborn babies will have these numbers from the time they are babies till they pass away.
Officials of the National Identification Authority (NIA) say cards bearing the biometrics and other data will be issued to the children when they are older, after their digits and other features are fully formed.
Speaking in Cape Coast at the 75th Anniversary celebrations of Ghana National College, Dr Bawumia indicated that the issuance of ID numbers at birth was an integral part of government’s ongoing digitalization agenda, designed to prepare the nation to fully partake in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
He said the Ghana Card is increasingly becoming the single source of proof of identity, with the unique number serving several purposes including as the Social Security, Health Insurance and Tax Identification number.
He challenged management of the college to embrace the possibilities offered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve teaching, problem solving and critical thinking, noting that it could be deployed meaningfully to bridge the gap between the developed and developing world.
“If we are in agreement that the boys and girls in our schools today are being trained to compete on the global stage, there is every justification for our students to be given exposure to AI.
“Government’s ongoing digitalization agenda is ample testimony of its appreciation of AI and the commitment to ensure that this country is not left behind. We have focused on pursuing digitalisation as part of our economic strategy because the Fourth Industrial Revolution is upon us and we must be part of the modern world…
“Whilst Government will do its part by leading the charting of a pathway to the deployment of meaningful AI in our national life, I expect our educational authorities to devise and deploy innovative teaching strategies that factor in ICT as a key ingredient,” he added.