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Huduma cards expected to replace traditional Identity cards as main form of identification in Kenya

Long awaited Huduma Namba that elicited all forms of controversies when launched may be on the way to Kenyans after all. This comes after a long period of waiting since the government launched a registration drive across the country. The main objective of the Huduma cards was to establish an integrated database for various documents including birth certificates, passport numbers and even driving licenses for use by different state agencies.

According to recent reports from the ICT ministry, Kenyans should expect to start receiving their Huduma Namba cards from as early as next month, which is will happen in a gradual rollout and consequently invalidate Identity cards in a years’ time. the initial rollout will cover about three million Kenyans followed by another five million from February 2021.

For those whose cards will be ready for pickup, they’ll be receiving a text message from the government indicating when and were to pick their cards. Kenyans will have a month to collect their cards. According to Mucheru, current ICT cabinet secretary, come the December of 2021, Kenyans without Huduma cards will not have access to government services.

But for those who didn’t make it during the initial registration drive for various reasons, the government is set to unveil a second phase of mass registrations. As of last registration drive, the government managed to capture details of 38 million people at an estimated cost of Ksh. 9.6 billion. This effectively indicate that close to ten million Kenyans are yet to be registered for the Huduma Namba.

The government is expected to centralize details for all Kenyans under the National Information Integrated Management System, combining all important documents including the National ID number, driving license, Passport, National Socila Security Fund and National Hospitals Insurance Fund Numbers.

Registration for the Huduma cards captured details of Kenyans including e-mail addresses, physical and permanent addresses, photo, parents or guardians, phone number, place of birth and marital status. These data will be available for various institutions electronically including private corporations that provide essential services.   

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