The Madina District Court has sentenced Derick Armstrong, a Nigerian citizen, and a resident of Lapaz, suburb of Accra to four months imprisonment for falsely representing himself as a Ghanaian in an effort to register for the Ghana Card contrary to law.
Armstrong’s crime took place at the Premium Registration Centre established at the Headquarters of the National Identification Authority (NIA).
Carrying a Ghanaian passport, a Ghanaian birth certificate and other registration requirements, Armstrong claimed he was a Ghanaian, and hence eligible for the Ghana Card.
In the course of the usual stringent interview by the NIA registration officials, it was suspected that Armstrong was not a Ghanaian.
The NIA officials quickly handed him to the Police CID detachment located at NIA’s Headquarters for further investigation. Despite Armstrong’s initial claim that both his father and mother were Ghanaians, investigations later established that both his parents were Nigerians.
The suspect was arraigned before the Madina District Court and charged with the following counts:
1. Possession of forged documents; contrary to section 166 of the Criminal offences Act 1960(Act 29)
2. Defrauding by False Pretense; contrary to section 13(1)(32) of the Criminal Offences Act 1960(Act 29)
3. Deceiving Public Officer; contrary to section to Section 251 of the Criminal offences Act 1960(Act 29).
At the end of the trial, the accused was found guilty on all counts, and after a plea of leniency by a friend of the court (a lawyer), the Presiding Judge sentenced the accused to a cumulative jail term of four months to run concurrently, and to be served at the Ankaful Prisons.
The court further ordered the complainant to request for a court order, in order to ensure the physical destruction and deletion of the documents in his possession from the individual organizations databases.
The NIA wishes to commend the CID of the Ghana Police Service for the swift and efficient manner it investigated and prosecuted the offence.
Any foreign national, legally resident in Ghana, and with a valid resident permit can register for the Non-Citizen Card which is issued at various designated centers across the country including the NIA Headquarters.
NIA wishes to caution that any foreigner who tries to register for the Ghana Card (Card meant for citizens only) shall be arrested and duly prosecuted.
Ag Head, Corporate Affairs