By Mustafa Mahmoud
On the 18th of February 2019, the government of Kenya rolled out the National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS), more popularly known as Huduma Namba (Swahili for “Service Number”). The system is intended to create and operate a national population register as a single source of information about citizens and foreign residents. It has been referred to by the government as the “single source of truth” in regards to citizenship documentation in the country.
Four days before, on the 14th of February, Nubian Rights Forum (NRF), a Namati partner organization, filed a case in the High Court of Kenya Constitutional and Human Rights Division to try and stop its rollout. NIIMS, they stated, is in breach of the constitution as it violates the right to privacy Article 31, the right to equality, and the right to non-discrimination in the bill of rights, as well as the right to public participation.