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Huduma Namba-Fear and Suspicion among Kenyans

Registration was launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga on April 2 to run for 45 days until May 17.

It is Kenya’s first digital integrated record of citizen data which gives the Government a robust platform to deliver first class service according to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Kenyans living in the Diaspora will also take part in registering their Huduma Namba beginning May 6, 2019 for a period of 45 days at their respective Embassies and Consulates.

By Mkarimu team

There has been fear and suspicion among members of the public on ‘Huduma namba’ registration as the dateline set by the government nears.

There is still uncertainty where the card will be applicable with majority questioning and accusing the government for giving misleading information about the exercise.

Others don’t know what even the exercise is all about.

“Are we registering for a new ID, or does the government want to open bank accounts for every Kenyan so that we start getting paid like US?” one member asked who sought to remain anonymous.

With 17 days down the exercise, 11 million people have already registered for Huduma Namba, President Uhuru Kenyatta confirmed on Thursday.

Why is the government forcing citizens to register for the number? Is there a hidden agenda in the process?

There has been more questions behind the initiative as the government is using a force to make sure everyone registers for the number.

On Thursday, Communications Authority Director General Francis Wangusi said the government will switch off mobile phone sim cards whose owners will not have registered for Huduma Namba by the end of the deadline.

This is move that is set to make good number of Kenyans to get registered.

Wangusi was quoted as saying there will be dire consequences if one fails to register.

Among the punitive measures, he said will be the inability to use one’s mobile phones, access to MPesa Service, Airtel Money, and ATM withdrawal.

The government has also threatened to deal with pastors who mislead people that Huduma Namba is linked to the Biblical 666 number.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr. Fred Matiang’i on Monday said everybody has to register and get the service.

Hurged Kenyans to shun the propaganda and politics surrounding the Huduma namba process, saying it was aimed at curbing corruption.

Last month the President warned pastors and bishops opposed to the idea who mislead their followers that the project is demonic. Uhuru promised to deal with them.

“But when government comes with an initiative, you have to do it, or else you will be left behind,” one of in Meru county residents who sought anonymity told Mkarimu Media.”We were told it will be used basically for government services, now there are rumours that it will be linked to our bank accounts, “he adds

Kenyans living in the Diaspora will also take part in registering their Huduma Namba beginning May 6, 2019 for a period of 45 days at their respective Embassies and Consulates.

Court order

The roll out of the National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS), also known as Huduma Namba, had been challenged in court but the government was allowed to continue with the registration on condition that it should not be mandatory.

A three-judge bench – comprising Justices Weldon Korir, Pauline Nyamweya and Mumbi Ngugi – on April 1, 2019, also barred the government from collecting DNA data and GPS coordinates as well as sharing the NIIMS information with any foreign organization.

The NIIMS project seeks to identify all Kenyan residents and registered foreigners through a unique primary identifier using biometric (fingerprints and facials only), demographic and physical details in an exercise that also aims at enhancing national security

On social media Kenyans who are opposed to the idea counld not stop reacting
Mkarimu Media has collected some reactions of Kenyans withholding their names for security reasons.

Reactions

Anonymous:If the government wanted to harmonize the changes, why couldn’t they just merge all the good ideas behind Huduma Card to the national ID? Does the SIM card belong to the government that they would wish to switch it on and off at their pleasure? Could they use such money ( Huduma Card project ) to fund free Secondary education or subsidize University fees which would definitely have a positive impact on her citizens? Bottom line, our “government is busy eating her citizens”. one of the members said on social media.

Anonymous:Folks this Huduma department is a whole scam the government initiated to swindle money from the poor. Since when did a government own a credit card? Are we starting to pay back the Chinese debt that Uhuru borrowed? We all know nothing comes for free.

Anonymous:I also think that this is targeting economically active generation… I am not sure if this Huduma number will make any sense to my grand parents.

Anonymous:Identity and Transactions are two different things. Human beings should have rights on how they want to carry out their transactions. Huduma number to me I could have suggested that it should only serve as an Identity card like a SIN card and should be used only in important matters such as in Medical institutions, schools, work places etc

Anonymous:There is a big payday coming. The government want us to pay the big loans…When you look at it from this perspective, you will understand why the urgency and the frenzy to register as many within as short a time as possible.