After double registration, a Kenyan ID card gave me a sense of belonging

Published: 26/Jul/2023
Source: Citizen Digital (Kenya)

By Ann Nyathira

After Aden Farah turned eighteen, he was considered stateless, trapped in his village in Garissa County, having limited options.

Farah was a victim of double registration as his Kenyan parents registered him as a refugee and subsequently settled in a camp.

“When drought and hunger hit my county, my family registered as refugees in bid to get basic needs like food and education because they did not have the means to cater for us. They could not have known the implications then but left the camp when things got better,” he said.

For the 25-year-old ICT graduate, life without an identification card is filled with restrictions. He was not aware of his refugee status until after his secondary education.

“I could not move about freely, access government services, register a SIM card, open a bank account, enter into many government and corporate offices, or gain formal employment. All these things I could not do. It felt like I was in prison yet I had not committed any crime,” he said.

Read further:

Themes: ID Documents and Passports, Nationality and Refugees
Regions: Kenya
Year: 2023