Machakos County Gov’t won’t pay staff without Huduma Namba


File image of government officers registering for NIIMS.
File image of government officers registering for NIIMS.

In Summary

  • This comes in spite of a High Court order, delivered by a three-judge bench on April, 2019, that the government should not issue deadlines for the collection of NIIMS data or make the exercise mandatory.
  • Machakos County, however, on Tuesday released a memo to all staff informing them of an April 20, 2019, deadline to register for NIIMS and get a Huduma Namba.

Machakos County Government staff will not get next month’s salary without registering for the Huduma Namba, the county administration has warned.

This comes in spite of a High Court order, delivered by a three-judge bench on April 1, 2019, that the government should not issue deadlines for the collection of National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS) data or make the exercise mandatory.

Machakos County, however, on Tuesday released a memo to all staff directing them to register for NIIMS and get a Huduma Namba by April 20, 2019.

“Please note that your May 2019 salary will not be released without your Huduma Number (Namba) having been submitted to the payroll office,” read the memo signed by Public Service and Quality Management Chief Officer Joseph Ochwada.

In a move that had sparked public uproar, the government previously said no Kenyan would receive government services, nor obtain an ID, passport, driving license or even a birth certificate without first registering on the system.

The Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC), Nubian Rights Forum, and the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNHCR) filed separate cases challenging the NIIMS programme on grounds that Kenya has no legislation on data protection.

Justices Weldon Korir, Pauline Nyamweya and Mumbi Ngugi on Monday allowed the government to roll out NIIMS as had been earlier planned.

The court, however, also barred the government from collecting DNA data and GPS coordinates as well as sharing the information with any foreign organization.

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday launched the programme in Masii, Machakos County, while opposition leader Raila Odinga presided over the roll out at Shika Adabu area in Likoni, Mombasa County.

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Story By Ian Omondi
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