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Government To Print IDs for 24 hours to Clear Backlog

The government is set to be printing identification cards for 24 hours to clear a backlog of unprinted IDs. About 400, 000 IDs remain unprinted. The delay is said to be caused by the breakdown of the printing machine and a court order that stopped printing of third generation IDs.

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“The system, the production, the entire process of production of IDs is up and running. And that every Kenyan now who applies for ID is able to get it on time,” Principal Secretary for Immigration and Citizen Services Ambassador Professor Julius K. Bitok said.

Principal Secretary Julius Bitok. Credit: Capital News

“Since we started producing Maisha cards we have been able to produce 600, 000 in the last like three four months. And per day, our machines here are able to produce 700 per hour making it 15, 000 per day. We are producing 15, 000 per day. That is when we are working day and night, because we are working 24 hours,” he added as he toured the National Registration Bureau headquarters.

The secretary for the national registration bureau assured the press that the current backlog stemming from the court order will be cleared within 30 days. Afterwards, the Kenyans will be free to pick up their identification cards.

Secretary for the National Registration Bureau Christopher Wanjau. Credit: Swala Nyeti

About 8, 000 new applications for an ID come in every day. To meet these requests, the principal secretary says they have acquired a new machine which will push total production to 30, 000 in a day.

The government has moved swiftly in response to a coverage of the same issue by Citizen TV a week ago. The coverage highlighted that Kenyans have had to wait for six months after making their applications yet they haven’t received their IDs.

Kenyans were seen camping outside Huduma centre offices waiting for the cards. Others reported having gone there for days. The lack of an ID has cost them job opportunities and chances to enrol in driving school.

Read Also: Maisha Card: Kenya To Roll Out Digital IDs for First-Time Applicants

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