To become holder of an ID card can be taken for granted but it is a luxury in Uganda. It looks as a joke but unfortunately, it is a reality in the country of Yoweri Museveni (photo) that is the last country in the East African Community (EAC) to issue national ID cards to its citizens.
And it is henceforth done.
Last Wednesday, the Ugandan authorities were the first Ugandan to have received their ID cards. It is now the turn of the common citizens to receive their own.
Many of them went to their respective registration points for the withdrawal. According to President Museveni, 86 % of the Ugandans of more than 16 years old were registered up to date and the 2,5 million remaining over 18 million inhabitants will be registered around February next year.
The Ugandan Minister of Interior, General Aronda Nyakairima, underlined that for this first registration, ID cards will be issued to all Ugandan citizens free of charge but the renewal will be paying.
The minister besides added that its use as document of travel through the borders, the ID card will also be a compulsory document to benefit from public services among which, the free access to health care and education in the country.
Early 2015, EAC heads of States particularly Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania agreed to use the national ID cards as documents of travel through their borders.
However, contrary to Kenya and Rwanda, the Ugandan citizens still did not have their own at the time of the agreement.
Original text by: Blaise AKAME