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Sierra Leone News: Civil registration card may not be used for 2018 election

The National Civil Registration Identification (ID) Card will be a multi-purpose identification card that may be used for travel, social security, identification, or many other uses. In other words, it will serve as a multi-purpose card. However, citizens may not enjoy the benefit of using this card for voting during the 7 March 2018 National election.
Donald King, the Head of Community and Public Relations of the National Civil Registration Authority (NCRA), said though the Authority was in the process of preparing the cards, there is no definite time for it to be issued. King said the Authority will continue to update the public about the registration. He said, “If all goes well the cards will be available before the election.”
King said the vision is to get one card that will have a non-transferable national identification number that will be unique to the card owner. He added that the card will be durable and will be renewed every ten years. There may be payment for renewal and replacement but it will be on a cost recovery basis.
“I want the public not to be apprehensive. We went into a social contact with them that they should be registered with the Authority and the Authority will give them a multi-purpose ID card. Irrespective of how long it will take they will get a multi-purpose ID card”.
During a stakeholders meeting conducted by the National Electoral Commission, last week, the Director of External Relations of the Commission, Albert Massaquoi, assured that the Commission will go on with the election whether the civil registration ID Cards are ready or not.
He stated that the Commission has also contracted the assistance of technical staff for advice on the production of voter identification cards with regards to its durability and cost effectiveness. He said, “Taking into consideration the March 7, 2018 election timeline, the Commission is going with the more appropriate option of having low-cost ID cards. We should have completed all of these arrangements six months before the election”.
By Edna Smalle
Tuesday August 08, 2017.

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