Ugandans will own digital national IDs by 2024 says Minister of Internal Affairs

The Minister of Internal Affairs, Gen. Odongo Jeje revealed to reporters that Ugandans will own digital national IDs by 2024. This was revealed earlier this week as different sectors of government made presentations about the status of the implementation of the NRM manifesto. These presentations are aimed at giving the public accountability by sharing views on current progress and achievements as well as challenges faced in their various ministries.

Also read: The new driving license issuance process in Uganda

Through recent efforts to improve public service delivery, the government has worked towards automating a number of its activities in collaboration with government agencies like NITA-U. The latest of these efforts will be the new digital national IDs that will be unveiled by 2024.

Ugandans will own digital national IDs making room for more diversity

According to NTV Uganda, Gen. Odongo Jeje said the government is working towards modifying the current national ID to include an electronic chip replacing the bar code as a way to make it more secure and diverse.

He further explained, “We would like to introduce an electronic chip that will be able to carry a lot of bio data which will be an added advantage. We hope those enhanced features will enable it to be more versatile and used more frequently by the owner to conduct business and also act as a travel document.”

Even as the adoption and roll-out of digital IDs is still low in various places around the world, the Ministry of Internal Affairs shared that Ugandans will own digital national IDs by 2024. One of the advantages of digital IDs is that they provide reliable authentication and enable the delivery of a range of services via the web or mobile applications that require proof of identity.

Digital IDs have the potential to generate significant economic and social benefits, including lower costs and increased financial, social, and political inclusion.

The process of national ID card issuance in Uganda is however still quite frustrating and exhausting which has limited many from acquiring their identity cards. To date, only 15,868,895 national IDs have been issued out which could leave many wondering whether Ugandans will own digital national IDs anytime soon as implied by the government.

Various digital government efforts towards better service delivery

The Ministry of Works revealed changes that would apply to the new driving licenses as the driving license issuance process was handed over to Uganda Security Printing Company (USPC). The Ministry of Works and Transport assures Ugandans about the new security features embedded within the card that will make them hard to forge as it has been in certain instances in the past. The system has been tightly integrated with Police systems for easy verification and issuance of express penalties by the traffic police gadgets.

The Ministry of ICT and National Guidance launched online postal services in Uganda in a bid to ease service delivery. One of the applications of the innovation is to enable online creation and management of Post Office Addresses (previously called P.O Box Numbers) which were previously handed out through a manual process.

NITA-U developed an e-licensing system which was handed over to the National Forestry Authority has features that will enable dissemination of information to farmers, will allow farmers to monitor their harvest, monitor acreage, and make online applications for tree planting. A number of other things this new system will enable include access to information about their application status; make online payments and access payment information among other features according to New Vision.

Read more: The launch of online postal services in Uganda will enhance service delivery

Read more: Government citizen interaction centre moved to State House according to an official announcement

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