The government is set to roll out the new third-generation IDs, dubbed Maisha Card.
The process will cost the Kenya Kwanza Administration Sh1 billion.
According to Immigration Principal Secretary Julius Bitok, the new IDs will be different from the Huduma Namba.
“We have transitioned from Huduma Namba to Maisha Card. I want to point out that we will not go back to Kenyans for biometrics because we will use the existing database,” he said.
Huduma Namba which harmonized several registrations into one identification number, was stopped by the courts over data protection concerns.
Once assigned at birth, the Maisha Number will serve as a lifelong Unique Personal Identifier throughout an individual’s life.
“It will be a Unique Personal Identifier across the lifetime of someone that is why we are calling it the Maisha Number. It is a lifetime number from birth to death, for all documents that will be the number that will be used,” he said.
The Unique Personal Identifier will be used as the official identifier throughout all education stages, tax payment through the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), and as the death certificate number upon demise.
The PS acknowledges that it will take time to roll out the third-generation IDs.
“We will take between two to three years to transition to the new number if we issue about three to four million cards annually,” he said.
Those replacing lost or damaged IDs will be issued Maisha Cards instead of second-generation cards.