Governors from the ASALs counties have faulted the government over lack of civic education on the registration exercise under the National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS).
The Governors have said the lack of awareness and short period set for the registration would inconvenience communities in Northern Kenya who are largely pastoralists.
They insisted these communities have little knowledge of the exercise which the government has set as mandatory and a requisite in future when accessing government services.
Speaking on Friday after the conclusions of the three-day Frontier Counties Development Council (FCDC) Governors’ summit in Lodwar town, FCDC Chairman and Mandera Governor Ali Roba warned that the exercise as designed would lock out a majority of residents in ASALs counties.
“A matter of such grave concern and importance should not have taken place without massive civic education taking place at all levels, and we are asking the national government to release adequate resources for civic education on the NIMS programme,” he said.
Governor Roba said that most pastoralists don’t have documents required for the registration- IDs or birth certificates.
He also said that communities living along the border in Turkana and West Pokot had crossed over to Uganda in search of water and pastures and would miss out on the 45-day exercise.
On his part, Governor Nanok said that the Turkana County Government was focused on drought emergency response in the next three month and announced that Ksh 800 million had been reallocated for the planned response.
He said drought response was the priority for counties in ASALs and asked for either the extension of the exercise beyond three months or have it postponed altogether.
“If you insist on rolling it out then there will be less than five percent people who will register and so let’s not disenfranchise citizenry of this country especially those experiencing drought,” Governor Nanok said.
Marsabit Governor Mohamud Ali urged state agencies responsible for the issuance of ID cards to step up the process to allow Kenyans to register for the Huduma Namba.
Other Governors who spoke were Prof. John Lonyangapuo of West Pokot, Ali Korane of Garissa and Mohamed Ali of Wajir.