Supreme Court ruling on birth certificate shallow – Dafeamekpor

The NDC MP for South Dayi, Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor has described a ruling by the Supreme Court on the birth certificate as shallow.

The court in a document detailing its full judgement on the reason to dismiss the NDC’s case against the EC last month explains birth certificate does not establish the identity of the bearer.

The decision states that a birth certificate does not link its holder to the information it contains. It adds that it provides no evidence of citizenship.

But Mr. Dafiamekpor who is also member of the Judiciary Committee of Parliament in an interview with JoyNews’ Joseph Opoku Gakpo says the decision is wrong.

“I humbly disagree with the court. The court construed identification to mean that you should have a photograph on a certain material to be identified, which is wrong.

“The construction that the court placed on the term identification is wrong,” he added.

He explains that if a person is in possession of their university transcript or certificate, that is a prima facie evidence that they have attended that institution and have been issued with a certificate or transcript reflecting their academic records.

“That presumption is only rebutted if a verification or a search is conducted and it turns out that indeed I did not attend UCC [University of Cape Coast] or the documents that I bear which I am seeking to be linked to its contents do not reflect the output that I gave when I was in University of Cape Coast of University of Ghana.

“For the Supreme Court to simply say that anybody who is in possession of Ghana’s birth certificate does not constitute a proper linkage of the birth certificate and the bearer is, with all due respect, shallow,” he said.

Responding to whether the NDC will seek a review of the judgement, Mr Dafeamekpor said the party has set up a committee to review the ruling.

The party, after this is done will decide on the way forward.

“We are studying it as a party. It has far reaching consequences because for the Supreme Court to pronounce categorically without giving justification that where a person who is in possession of a birth certificate issued by the statutory intuition, Births and Deaths Registry of the Republic of Ghana, does not in any way link the content of that birth certificate to the identity of the bearer is problematic.”

He added that the Supreme Court failed to analyze the issue of identity but proceeded to make a categorical statement.

“They have forgotten completely that identifying a person does not always mean that you must look at their photograph.”

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