Kenya Shadows Nigeria In Payments‐enabled ID Cards Rollout

NIgeria id card RenewnaijaJust a few weeks after the Nigerian government launched a new national electronic Identity Card (eID) initiative to produce cards that can also be used for e-commerce, the Kenyan government is reportedly making similar moves to integrate banking into the planned national electronic identity cards and further boost financial inclusion in Kenya.

This was disclosed by Fred Matiang’I who hinted that the proposal for a payment enabled national eID had been submitted to the Ministry of Interior and Coordination which oversees an ongoing exercise to transition the country away from manual public record keeping.

“All East African Community member countries are required by the EAC protocol to have new generation IDs before the end of June, 2015. The suggestions we have made on the kind of new generation ID that Kenya should have include a tool that will make it a payment card,” he said recently.

Similar to the model for Nigeria’s eID cards, the proposed cards for Kenyans are to host the biometric details of the owner and also provide information on voter registration, driving license and international passports. Banks that operate across the East African Community (EAC) are likely to be the biggest beneficiaries as the card will boost access of their services to customers.

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