The High Court has granted an early hearing of the case where two people have filed an interim injunction application to halt the registration process by the National Identification Authority (NIA) in the Eastern Region.
The case which was originally scheduled to be heard on 9th April 2020 was changed upon the request by the Attorney General who is opposing the halting of the registration exercise.
In the ruling of the court, the judge, Justice Anthony Oppong said his decision is to expedite the determination of the case due to the human rights nature of it.
He moved the case to tomorrow, Friday, March 27, 2020, to hear the application.
The two other citizens, Kevow Mark-Oliver and Emmanuel Akumatey Okrah sued the NIA arguing in their writ that the continuous registration and issuance of the Ghana card in the Eastern Region has a strong tendency in “aggravating the spread of the coronavirus”.
They among other things sought an interlocutory injunction restraining the NIA from continuing with the exercise until the coronavirus has been eliminated.
This case is a separate suit from the one filed by the 30 individuals which the High Court has granted an injunction on.
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.
Following the injunction application filed at the High Court restraining t
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.