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All is set for the historic issuance of the National Identification numbers (Ghana-Card numbers) to newborn babies in Ghana, Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia, has announced.

This follows the successful integration of the databases of the Births and Deaths Registry, the National Identification Authority and the Ghana Health Service.

Vice President Bawumia announced this during the 75th Anniversary of the Ghana National College, in Cape Coast on Saturday.

He said the first Ghana Card number was issued to a newborn baby on Friday, July 21, 2023, after a successful test run of the system.

“The work of integrating the databases has been completed, the full test was done yesterday, and I am happy to say that the first Ghana Card number for a baby was issued yesterday.

“So, from next month, all babies born in Ghana, once they take them to Weigh-In, they will be issued the Ghana-Card numbers and also get their Birth Certificate Identification numbers at the same time, because the two databases are talking to each other.”

“This is very transformational,” Dr Bawumia said, explaining that they will have these numbers from the time they are babies till they pass away.

Officials of the National Identification Authority (NIA) said cards bearing biometrics and other data would be issued to the children when they are older after their digits and other features are fully formed.

Dr Bawumia emphasised that the issuance of ID numbers at birth was an integral part of the government’s ongoing digitalization agenda, designed to prepare the nation to fully partake in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The Ghana Card is increasingly becoming the sole source of proof of identity, with the unique number serving several purposes including the Social Security, Health Insurance and Tax Identification number.

Touching on the impact of the Ghana National College on Ghana’s pre-and post-colonial education life, Vice President Bawumia challenged managements, staff and students in educational institutions to embrace the possibilities offered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve teaching, problem-solving and critical thinking.

He noted that AI could be deployed meaningfully to bridge the gap between the developed and developing world.

“If we are in agreement that the boys and girls in our schools today are being trained to compete on the global stage, there is every justification for our students to be given exposure to AI.

“Government’s ongoing digitalization agenda is ample testimony of its appreciation of AI and the commitment to ensure that this country is not left behind.

“We have focused on pursuing digitalisation as part of our economic strategy because the Fourth Industrial Revolution is upon us and we must be part of the modern world,” he pointed out.

“Whilst Government will do its part by leading the charting of a pathway to the deployment of meaningful AI in our national life, I expect our educational authorities to devise and deploy innovative teaching strategies that factor in ICT as a key ingredient,” the Vice President added.

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