KEPSA rallies behind use of NIIMS

Huduma Namba
CONTROVERSIAL: Huduma Namba
Image: FILE

The private sector supports the digital registration of Kenyans launched on Tuesday.

Kenya Private Sector Alliance (Kepsa) said the National Integrated Identity Management system (NIIMS) will help traders easily identify their business partners.

Top KEPSA officials on Wednesday met ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru, and  agreed to support key state technology policies and programmes.

We have to know who the individuals we are doing business with are. Those in Agriculture have to know and be able to access data on who are the traders involved across the chain
KEPSA Chairman Nicholas Nesbitt

The meeting centred on opportunities the private sector can have in government ICT related programs.

KEPSA Chairman Nicholas Nesbitt hailed the introduction of NIIMS, saying it is timely and a big boost to the private sector.

He said it is important for businesses to know who they are trading with as well as the government being in a position to monitor people or companies contracted to run key government projects.

He noted that it was also important for the government to have all the necessary data from all Kenyans for easy tracing in case of emergencies.

ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru said the new system will transform the country by ensuring easy access to services.

He revealed that KEPSA had committed to ensuring that all its members are registered on the system.

Mucheru noted that a good collaboration between the government and the private sector on the use of NIIMS will also help in job creation.

“The system will heavily transform our country and we will make services available in an easy way to as many Kenyans within a short period,” Mucheru noted.

In the meeting, the two entities also agreed on the need to ensure the data on NIIMS is protected.

This, they said will be achieved if the data protection bill goes through in parliament.

He had earlier  urged the National Assembly to fast track the enactment of the Data Protection Bill to safeguard the implementation of the Access to Information Act 2016.

He said it was important  bill to be passed so as to safeguard against possible misuse of the provisions of Access to Information Act 2016.

Mucheru also  said that there is already a clear guideline on how individual data can be accessed adding that there is no course for alarm.

The CS revealed that the government has set aside Sh 18billion for creation of a data management centre that will be used in protecting and safeguarding individual data.

They also discussed on how they can work together in the use of ICT in key sectors of the economy with Agriculture being the main agenda.

On Monday,the High Court gave the Government a go ahead to roll out the NIIMS system.

However in the ruling, the government was told not to make the exercise mandatory or issue deadlines for the collection of data.

The government was also barred from collecting DNA data and GPS coordinates, pending determination of the case challenging the exercise and also share information with foreign organizations.

Following the court ruling, President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday launched the Sh 6 billion registration system in Machakos.

The launch saw the flagging off of the registration kits to all the 47 counties.In support of NIIMS, the President said the registration would assist to verify the actual number of government employees.

He also  said NIIMS will reduce cases of identity theft and make property transactions more safe.