Home NEWS Local News No Kenyan will be forced to acquire Digital IDs-CS Owalo

No Kenyan will be forced to acquire Digital IDs-CS Owalo


Information, Communication and Digital Economy Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo has said that no Kenyan will be forced to take the new Digital Identity cards.

While releasing his Ministry’s one-year status report on Monday, CS Owalo made it clear that the Digital Identity was different from the Huduma Number which was rolled out in the previous regime.

In May this year, President William Ruto announced that his administration sought to introduce digital identification cards as part of government’s agenda to digitize all its services.

“When we talk about digital identity people start thinking about the Huduma Number. I want to clarify that the Digital Identity cards we are talking about is not the same as the Huduma Number both in terms of objectives and context,” CS Owalo stated.

“We have embarked on the process of pursuing Digital Identity for all Kenyans. It is not the same thing as the Huduma Number. We need a virtual means through which the government can confirm that you are whom you claim to be,” he added.

CS Owalo highlighted some of the key initiatives the ICT Ministry has undertaken over the past one year which include; roll out of the fiber optic cable, free public Wi-Fi hotspots, digitizing government services, the revitalization of the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation and also addressed the recent cyber attack on key government services.

On the fiber optic cable, Owalo noted that the Kenya Kwanza administration had surpassed its target by laying 5,280 kilometers, 280 more than it had set by June 2023.

“On the roll-out 100,000Km fiber cable, our target for June 2023 was 5,000km. Am happy to announce we have surpassed that target and managed to realize 5,280km,” said CS Eliud Owalo

The ICT boss revealed the government’s target of establishing 25,000 hotspots countrywide with the objective of ensuring Kenyans operating below the economic pyramid are supported by Government to get access to internet.

He noted that over 420 Wi-Fi hotspots are already operational in markets and bus termini nationwide.

He added: “Our target was to operationalize two hotspots per county by June 2023, we’ve surpassed this target and we are at a total of 421 free public Wi-Fi hotspots as at 31st July.”