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Posts Tagged ‘national identity card’

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It’s finally here, Uganda’s very own national identity card. And it has been a long time time coming, so we can only breathe a sigh of relief that it’s not too soon. It is an idea that is a national necessity considering the security and legal implications that an ID card presents or solves!

One may wonder what Ugandans have used in the mean time. Well one used their high school ID, university or college ID and one issued by your employer. if you did not fit any of the categories above one simply marched into town got a generic ID and wrote down what ever you wanted and got the local council to endorse it! Madness? absolutely!

In fact in Uganda today the whole economic and legal system relies on the local councillors in your home area to verify who you say you are.

That said, people change the order of their names or replace them entirely. The name on one’s driving licence is not necessarilly the same in your passport or work ID. This is obviously a legal nightmare and one that fraudsters would exploit to the full and they have. The banks finally got together a few years ago and established a credit reference bureau that had a biometric card linked to it. This greatly reduced the phenomenon of one person borrowing money from 4 different banks using 4 different names!

But it needs to be remembered that the national ID card does not exist in isolation, it needs to be securely linked to birth certificates, passports, voting cards, marriage certificates and the inevitable death certificate. All this requires honest civil servants who understand the vital nature of these documents and resist the temptation to compromise these documents that define who is a Ugandan.

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