By Awa B. Bah
Deputies at the National Assembly have unanimously called for the decentralization of the issuance of the country’s National Identity Cards. Deputies made these and other remarks during the adjournment debate of the First Ordinary Session of the 2019 Legislative year.
According to Deputies, the issuance of the country’s national document should be made available to every citizen, with ease. Deputies said citizens travel all the way from the Upper River and other Regions within the hinterland to the urban area, just to get this important national document; that most of them waste their time and resources to get the document only to be denied. Deputies highlighted that many of their Constituents, complain of the high level nepotism and corruption at the issuing centre in Kanifing; that some people spend nights before arriving at the tail end of the queue only to be rejected for no genuine reason; that establishing only one issuing centre for a population of 1.9 million people is unrealistic and unworkable, considering the importance of this document.
Deputies said the purpose of the Gambia National Identity card is to help authorities and security personnel to be able to identify Gambian citizens, but not to expose them and deny them of their rights to get the document.
They call on the concern authorities through the Ministry of Interior, to swiftly respond to the needs of citizens in accessing this document. They call on Government to prioritise the needs of the citizenry.
Deputies urge all eligible citizens to apply for the document, and follow the due process to get every Gambian registered with all their supporting documents.