ZIMBABWEAN MIGRANTS

Stateless community grateful for birth certificates

670 members get certificates for the first time in Kikuyu

In Summary

•They have been unable do simple things like buy a mobile line that requires ID.

•Community arrived in Kenya from Zimbabwe between 1959 and 1960 to preach.

Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung'wa hands over a birth certificate to a Shona member while Kinoo MCA Samuel Kimani looks on on Thursday, August 1
NEW CITIZENS: Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung'wa hands over a birth certificate to a Shona member while Kinoo MCA Samuel Kimani looks on on Thursday, August 1
Image: GEORGE MUGO

Members of the Shona community in Kikuyu has expressed joy after the issuance of birth certificates kicked off.

They said on Saturday the government's move shows it has recognised them after many years of struggle. They will now be able to get IDs.

The Department of Civil Registration on Thursday issued birth certificates to 670 Shona members at Kinoo chief's office.

 

The event was attended by Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung'wa, Kinoo MCA Samuel Kimani, Kiambu West civil registrar Judy Ambwaku and senior civil registrar Shummary Maleon.

Maleon said all Shona will be registered.

Large numbers of the Shona community live in Kinoo, Gitaru, Kiambaa and parts of Nairobi.

The Shona arrived in Kenya from Zimbabwe between 1959 and 1960 to preach as missionaries and started the Gospel of God Church.

Kinoo MCA Kimani said the Shona were unable to go back home after Kenya gained her Independence.

Abed Salam who is 21 years old said they feel as if they have been born again because they will soon be able to get services they have been denied for so long.

"We do not have IDs to register things such as mobile phones lines, own land, a vehicle and even take children to school"  Salam said.

Joshua Sibanda said once they are issued with IDs, they will register for other services like NHIF, NSSF, buy mobile phones and register them as well as buy many other amenities they desire but are restricted by lack of an ID.

"Some of us are hardworking. We have businesses we operate while hiding, but now we shall not hide any more. We shall pay taxes and any other requirement and help this country grow" Sibanda said.