The government on Wednesday, November 18, set the record straight on a version of Huduma Namba cards that had been circulated online. This was after ICT CS Joe Mucheru announced that the current National Identity cards would be replaced by Huduma Namba cards.
The cards had the logo of a popular American payment platform and were circulated online and were purported to be the new Huduma Namba cards.
Speaking to Kenyans.co.ke, Government Spokesperson Cyrus Oguna, however, dismissed the cards as fake.
"The card being circulated is fake. The government cannot collaborate with a card company on a national identity card," he stated.
On seeing the fake cards, a number of Kenyans took to social media to express their displeasure with the government's action.
LSK Chairman Nelson Havi stated that linking the card to a payment platform was against the constitution.
"National ID Card is an identification document issued under Section 9 of Registration of Persons Act. The Act has not been repealed or amended to enable substitution of ID Cards with Huduma Cards linked to a payment card as directed by CS Mucheru. The directive is unlawful," he stated.
Many Kenyans, who fell for the fake news, raised concerns over the expiry of the cards where residents would be forced to renew upon expiry of two to three years.
Speaking in Machakos, on November 18, CS Mucheru specifically revealed that the current ID card would become obsolete on December 12, 2021 after the nationwide rollout of the Huduma Namba.
He stated that Kenyans would receive a text message notifying them where to collect the new card.
The CS added that should one receive the SMS, they would be given one month to pick up their cards from the designated centres.
The Huduma Namba cards are under the National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS) where at least 37.7 million Kenyans have registered for the cards.
The card captures data on personal details from the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), the National Social Security Fund (NSSF), and the soon-to-be-phased-out national identification cards.