‘Bawumia is gradually turning into a joker, comedian following his embarrassing Ghana Card gaffe’- Expert
International Relations expert Prof. Agyenim Boateng has described as embarrassing the contradictions between Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia and the Foreign Affairs Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey over the use of the Ghana Card as a travelling document.
He said it is so disappointing that the Vice President could make such false claims when he knew the information he put in the public space was not authentic.
He was responding to details provided by the Foreign Affairs Minister when she appeared in parliament on Tuesday.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Shirley Ayorkor Botchway has revealed that the Ghana Card cannot be used as a sole document for international travelling yet.
Appearing in parliament on Tuesday, June 14, 2022, the Minister clarified that the passport and travel certificate remains the official documents for travelling outside the country.
She was responding to questions when she appeared before the House.
“The Ghana Card is not a replacement for the current biometric passport. The Ghana card serves as an optional travel document to be used in tandem with our biometric passport. It must be underscored that the passport together with the traffic certificates are the only approved travel documents that are internationally recognized”, she said.
Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Baeumia had stated that the card has fully met the requirements for an E-passport, despite a rejection by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
He further posited that the Ghana card would be recognised as an electronic passport in 197 countries by 2022.
But Shirley Ayorkor Botchway on the floor of Parliament said “At the moment, the Ghana Card cannot be used for travelling to other countries, either within or outside of ECOWAS. That will require bilateral agreements with countries for their authorities to accept the card as a travel document. The Ministry is in active discussions with ECOWAS member states and our bilateral partners to achieve this”.
Reacting, Prof. Boateng said the Vice President should always verify information before he makes them public.
Speaking on Nyankonton Mu Nsem on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, should be mindful of how people perceive him.
He said the second gentleman of the land has become a public ridicule and has found his place in the Guinness Book of records in a negative light.
“He is disgracing Ghanaians with his false claims and assertions. He is not the only one who would be embarrassed whenever he makes such false claims. If the Vice President wants to say something, he should verify the information first. He is the Vice President and above the Foreign Affairs Minister but technically, the Foreign Affairs Minister is the one in charge of diplomacy and foreign affairs.
He is behaving as if he is a joker and a comedian and ridiculing Ghanaians, especially those abroad. As someone with a Ph.D., he should be guided when making comments. He should not behave like a comedian,” he stressed.
Meanwhile, he has admitted that the Foreign Affairs Ministry should have clarified the issue right after the Vice President had made them and not wait till the Minister was summoned to appear in parliament before clarifying the issue.