More foreigners from ECOWAS countries are targeting the new voter identification cards, with all of them abusing the guarantee system with the connivance of willing Ghanaians.
A couple of days ago, news about the arrest of a Nigerian by the Aflao Sector Command of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) of a certain Emmanuel Phillip has prompted worry about the rate at which foreigners are flouting local citizenship laws.
The suspect was arrested on Monday as he tried to enter the country through the Aflao border in spite of the arrests of other defaulters.
The Ketu South portion of the Volta Region has gained notoriety for such breaches in recent times.
It was during a search on him that revealed the new voter ID card and upon interrogation by the Aflao Sector Commander of the GIS, Chief Superintendent Frederick Baah Duodu, the suspect said he lives with one Jerry Azametsi, a native of Aflao, and his wife, Abigail Togbor.
He confessed that it was the couple who persuaded him to register standing in as guarantors for him during the registration process.
After invitation to assist in investigations, Mr. Azametsi confessed that he aided his Nigerian friend who lives in Togo but visits regularly to take advantage of the registration exercise and get the card. The Aflao Sector Command of the GIS has since handed over the prime suspect and the two guarantors to the Aflao District Police for further investigation and subsequent prosecution.
THE KPONE District Police Headquarters is also probing the nationality of a 35-year-old suspected Togolese who attempted to register in the Kpone-Katamanso Constituency of the Greater Accra Region.
Elvis Kokou Segla was said to have gone to the Assemblies of God Church registration centre at Saki in the Kpone-Katamanso District to obtain a voter identification card when he was arrested.
The suspect who was holding an old voter ID card was reported to have admitted to be a Togolese but wanted to register because he said he had resided in Ghana for more than a year.
The Crime Officer of the Kpone District Police Headquarters, DSP Herbert Sosu, explained to DAILY GUIDE that the suspect was arrested on Wednesday, July 7, after three men who lodged complaint against him.
According to him, the suspect was spotted at the centre at about 4:00 p.m. trying to register for the voter ID card, and he was arrested.
He said police had initiated investigation into the matter because the suspect claimed his father hails from Togo, but his mother is a native of Anloga in the Volta Region.
In Najong I in the Bunkpurugu Constituency of the North East Region, immigration officials have arrested yet another Togolese, whose name was given as Duut Laabik, for attempting to register for the new voter card.
He has since been handed over to the Bunkpurugu police for the necessary action.
The District Immigration Officer, Deputy Supt Edwin Adjetey Doku, who confirmed the arrest to DAILY GUIDE, said military personnel who were on patrol at some unapproved routes near Najong 1 in the Bunkpurugu District realized that there was some confusion at a registration centre.
According to him, the military went to the scene and they were told that a Togolese was attempting to register, and they arrested and handed him over to the immigration officers.
Deputy Supt. Daku disclosed that during interrogation, the suspect admitted that he was a Togolese and that he only came to Ghana to register for health insurance card but upon his arrival, he saw people in a queue and when he asked, he was told they were registering for the voter card which he joined to register.
“The suspect’s statement has been taken and has been handed over to the police,” he said.
A number of Togolese who he said were in a queue in a place called Kambatiak, also in the Bunkpurugu Constituency, to register took to their heels when they heard immigration officials were approaching.
“We are told they were many and when they had a hint that we were coming, they ran away from the registration centre,” he said.
The District Immigration Officer has warned foreigners in the region that they will be dealt with severely when they attempt crossing the borders illegally or attempt to register, adding that immigration and military personnel will intensify their patrols within the area.
The foregone is just a tip of the iceberg of foreigners infiltrating the country to register often upon the requests of Ghanaians acting for a political party.
Several suspects are awaiting the completion of investigations into their cases prior to their appearance before court.
Observers think the delay in the completion of such investigations and subsequent sentencing has not provided the necessary deterrent.