Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Sulemana Braimah, has described the reaction of Members of Parliament (MP) regarding the ongoing SIM card registration as a manifestation of a system of beneficiaries and victims.
According to him, the agitation of the Minority MPs concerning the flaws of the SIM card registration exercise against the complicit silence of the Majority MPs demonstrates a clear division.
Speaking on JoyNews’ Newsfile on Saturday, Mr Braimah said, “I think that what we are experiencing is a manifestation of a system that has basically segmented the population into beneficiaries and victims. And for those who are beneficiaries of the system, everything is fine.
“And those of us – and I’d like to consider myself in the category of victims – who are affected by the problems that are ongoing continue to cry. And once we’re into that cohort of beneficiaries and victims, I think the banter will continue to be there.”
His comments come on the back of protests from Minority MPs who say the ongoing SIM card registration scheduled to come to an end on Sunday, July 31, should be postponed.
This comes at a time when a large number of Ghanaians are yet to receive their Ghana cards from the National Identification Authority (NIA), without which their SIM cards cannot be registered.
Many Ghanaians besieged telecommunication outlets across the country in a desperate attempt to register their SIM cards ahead of the deadline on Sunday, July 31.
In an analysis by JoyNews, about 7.9m Ghanaians are expected to lose SIM cards by the deadline.
Already, there are calls on the government and the Communications Ministry to extend the deadline of the SIM card re-registration exercise expected to end on Sunday.
The Minority in Parliament has urged President Akufo-Addo to instruct the Sector Minister, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, to postpone the deadline for yet another time.
The Mobile Money Agents Association of Ghana (MMAAG) has equally pleaded with the government and the Ministry to consider an extension of the exercise to January 2023.
Meanwhile, Mr Braimah further noted that attacks on journalists expecting them to be robot-like while reporting the frustration of the ordinary Ghanaian with the ongoing exercise is rather misplaced.
“And I believe those who may expect journalists to act like robots as you’re saying without emotions even though they know that journalists are supposed to hold the government accountable, I think that the fundamental role of the media is to play that watchdog role.
“And that watchdog role does not mean give people the opportunity to ventilate their concerns and so on and so forth but for you to be the mouthpiece of the ordinary people,” he said.