Individuals who registered for Huduma Namba will soon start receiving the cards, the Ministry of Interior has announced.
In a tweet on Tuesday night, the ministry said mass printing of the cards is underway and Kenyans will be notified through SMS on when and where to collect them.
“Mass printing of Huduma Namba cards is underway. If you registered, you will soon receive an SMS notification prompting you when and where to collect yours, ” the ministry said.
Yesterday, Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho inspected the mass production exercise.
In November last year, Information Communication Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru announced that Huduma Namba cards will replace National Identity (ID) cards.
Mucheru said ID cards will cease operation in December this year.
The swearing-in of Immaculate Kassait, Kenya’s first data commissioner, in November 2020, paved way for the roll-out of the printing exercise that will see the country adopt a National register through the National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS).
Kassait is tasked with the enforcement of the Data Protection Act which aims to regulate the processing of personal data and protect the privacy of individuals.
The high court had earlier halted the rollout of the cards terming it as unconstitutional. At the time, the Data Protection Law had not been enacted, and the country did not have a Data Commissioner.
During last year’s Mashujaa Day celebrations at Gusii Stadium, President Uhuru Kenyatta commissioned the distribution as he and the first lady received their Huduma Namba Cards.
The Huduma Namba card merges an individual’s data in a single electronic chip. Information captured includes details from the National Identity card, National Hospital Insurance Fund, National Social Security Fund among others.
According to the government, the purpose of the NIIMS initiative is to create and manage a central master population database which will be the `single source of truth’ on a person’s identity.
“The database will contain information of all Kenyan citizens and foreign nationals residing in Kenya and will serve as a reference point for ease of service delivery to the people of Kenya, ” information on Huduma Namba website reads.