Kenya to introduce digital IDs for citizens by year-end


The Kenyan authorities plans to roll out its digital identification system in December 2023 after the testing interval, which can take a few months. According to the president of Kenya, William Ruto, whose speech on the East Africa Device Assembly Kenya plant in Athi River was cited by native media on Oct. 30:

“The digital ID, which has been a major problem to us for a very long time, is now on testing mode for the next two months. I have been assured by all the stakeholders and the ministries concerned that by December we will be able to launch digital IDs.”

Digital IDs might be launched within the nation, together with Maisha Namba, a system of lifelong private identification numbers assigned to Kenyan citizens upon registration. The joint ID system will assist the nation digitize its registries and supply citizens with swifter entry to state, academic and medical assets.

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As the Principal Secretary of Immigration and Citizen Services, Julius Bitok, explained in August:

“The digital identity system will provide Kenyans with a secure and reliable way to verify their identity for a variety of purposes, including accessing gov’t services, opening bank accounts, and traveling […] It will also help to reduce fraud and corruption, and improve efficiency.”

In September, Bitok urged personal companies to embrace the digital ID programs, as they “enable innovative solutions like mobile banking and agent networks, transforming e-commerce processes.” He promised that the federal government will make sure the design of the digital ID will “facilitate commerce and ease business transactions.”

In June 2023, the Central Bank of Kenya expressed its doubts in regards to the necessity of implementing a central financial institution digital foreign money within the brief to medium time period, referring to “other innovative solutions around the existing ecosystem” that would tackle Kenya’s “pain points” in funds.

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