Kenya has entered into a partnership with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to advance its digital identity initiative. Immigration and Citizen Services Principal Secretary Prof Julius Bitok and Anthony Ngororano, the Resident Representative for UNDP, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) that solidifies the collaboration. The signing ceremony took place on August 14, 2023.
The agreement outlines that UNDP will provide technical assistance and collaborate with the Kenyan government to secure funding and resources for the digital ID project. Drawing from its extensive experience in aiding over 25 countries worldwide in developing their digital identity systems, Kenya aims to leverage UNDP’s expertise to establish a robust and secure digital identity infrastructure.
The collaborative effort seeks to address critical challenges associated with digital identification while ensuring the inclusion of diverse perspectives. By incorporating input from stakeholders and interest groups, the partners aspire to create a comprehensive and widely accepted digital identity system.
Kenya’s move towards digital identity adoption aims to overcome past obstacles, exemplified by initiatives like Huduma Namba, which encountered opposition and legal challenges due to privacy concerns. The joint effort between Kenya and UNDP signals a commitment to harnessing the power of technology to create a reliable and comprehensive digital identity framework, paving the way for enhanced public service delivery, online authentication, and improved citizen access to various services.
The official launch of the digital identity system, along with the associated Maisha Namba program, is scheduled for October 2, 2023. Earlier this year, ICT secretary Eliud Owalo said the Kenyan government was involved in “a benchmarking exercise in countries like Estonia and Pakistan” as it sought to develop its new digital ID program, adding that authorities were aiming to roll out such IDs to all Kenyans by March of next year.
August 14, 2023 – by the Mobile ID World Editorial Team