Somalia launches first digital national identity cards

Somalia has officially inaugurated its national identification and registration process, marking a pivotal moment for the nation’s digital transformation. The launch event, held in Mogadishu on Saturday, witnessed Prime Minister Barre emphasizing the transformative potential of the new biometric ID system, which is set to create a host of opportunities for citizens and foster an environment conducive to national cohesion.

The Prime Minister reiterated that the introduction of the National ID would serve as a catalyst for overcoming the socio-economic challenges that have impeded Somalia’s development. Moreover, it would significantly advance democracy and the rule of law, further cementing the government’s commitment to ensuring equal rights and participation for all Somali citizens in national endeavors.

“With the launch of the biometric identification system, our citizens will now enjoy their full constitutional rights,” declared Prime Minister Barre. “The issuance of properly registered national IDs will unlock a multitude of opportunities for the Somali people, fostering national cohesion and progress within our country.”

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, currently in Dhusamareb, the administrative capital of Galmudug State, was among the first to receive his ID card as part of the nationwide rollout. Praising the initiative as a significant milestone in Somalia’s state-building process, President Mohamud emphasized that the National ID system would enhance security measures and address critical national priorities.

“The National ID is indispensable for our country’s security and the fight against corruption,” President Mohamud asserted. “It ensures that individuals are known and accounted for from the moment they receive their ID until their passing, with their status recorded as deceased. In the 21st century, an ID is the key to security, the economy, services, education, health, and everything in between. Let us all obtain a national ID as soon as possible and unlock the benefits it brings.”

President Mohamud expressed gratitude to the government of Pakistan for its software assistance, which played a vital role in enabling Somali citizens to obtain their National IDs.

The momentous launch event garnered widespread participation from high-level government officials and representatives of Somalia’s development partners. Notable attendees included the European Union, African Union, various UN agencies, the World Bank Group, Pakistan, the United Kingdom, the United States, Gulf Countries, as well as partners from ID4Africa.

The introduction of the national identification and registration process marks a monumental step forward for Somalia, propelling the nation into a new era of digital transformation, unity, and progress.

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