Somalia to launch National ID cards after 30-year hiatus

MOGADISHU, Somalia (Caasimada Online) – Somalia is on the brink of a major breakthrough as it gears up to initiate the issuance of national identification cards after 30 years of dormancy. 

The East African country has been grappling with a plethora of challenges over the years, including a collapsed civil registry, which has exacerbated instability and impacted economic growth. 

The country has struggled with identity verification, making it challenging for authorities to keep track of citizens and to identify masqueraders. 

Consequently, insecurity has persisted, with terror groups like Al-Shabab taking advantage of the situation to launch deadly attacks.

The Identification card initiative

However, recent legislation passed by the Senate provides a glimmer of hope for Somalia as it sets the stage for a mass registration process. 

The government plans to use the registration exercise to issue national identification cards to all citizens, which could curb insecurity and bring about order in the country.

The Bill is awaiting the signature of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud to become law following its endorsement by the 54-member chamber on Saturday. 

The Senate’s approval comes after Bill’s earlier passage by the Lower House of the parliament on March 1. 

Interior Minister Ahmed Fiqi praised Bill’s passage, noting that it would solve the identity, security, financial transactions, and business registration challenges.

Importance of national identification

The issuance of national identification cards is crucial in Somalia’s quest for stability and economic growth. 

The lack of a comprehensive identification system has made it easy for terror groups to carry out attacks, as they can easily blend in with the population. 

With national identification cards, authorities can identify individuals and quickly weed out masqueraders, making it harder for terror groups to carry out attacks.

Moreover, national identification cards will facilitate financial transactions, as individuals can easily open bank accounts and access credit facilities. 

Additionally, it will make it easier for businesses to register and access government services.