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Courts declare Huduma Namba invalid

NATIONAL
By Kamau Muthoni | October 14th 2021

President Uhuru Kenyatta showing his Huduma Namba card after receiving it in December 2020. [File, Standard]

The High Court has declared Huduma Namba invalid after ruling that the law wasn’t followed in its roll-out.

Justice Jairus Ngaah ruled on Thursday, October 14, that the Government failed to conduct data impact assessment before rolling out the cards in November last year, contravening the Constitution in the process.

Law scholar Yash Pal Ghai and Katiba Institute had, in November 2020, challenged the roll-out of the cards over lack of guarantee against theft or misuse of Kenyans’ personal information.

The lobby group argued that the Government failed to subject the fresh registration of Kenyans to data protection impact assessment (DPIA), a requirement under the law.

The assessment is aimed at identifying risks that could arise due to a breach of privacy, loss of data and unlawful use of information like names, date of birth, postcode and residences.

The Government started issuing the cards in early December 2020, after stating that the current National Identification Cards would cease being valid in December this year.

President Uhuru Kenyatta launched the Huduma Namba mass registration on April 2, 2019.

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