ISLAMABAD: The Federal Republic of Somalia has launched a national identification system with the support of Nadra, a milestone for the ‘ID4Africa’ movement, which aims to provide all Africans with a digital identity by 2030.
Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre inaugurated Somalia’s national identity system during a conference held by NIRA Somalia in Mogadishu. The launch was attended by Somalia’s development partners — Pakistan, the EU, the World Bank Group, the UK, the US, Gulf countries, ID4Africa, diplomats and UN agencies, a press release said on Sunday.
The premier of Somalia expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar and the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) for their support in launching the Somali National ID system. He thanked them for their assistance in capacity building for NIRA Somalia.
Other dignitaries at the event, including the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Somalia, Catriona Laing, and the British Ambassador to Somalia, Mike Nithavrianakis, praised Nadra’s robust systems and congratulated the governments of Pakistan and Somalia on this accomplishment.
The Somalia National ID System is part of a multimillion-dollar grant extended by Pakistan to Somalia. It will enable NIRA and Somalia’s ministry of interior to implement their mandate of enhancing the country’s governance, security, and socio-economic development by equipping citizens of Somalia with a secure and universally recognised form of identification.
Nadra Chairman Asad Rehman Gilani said: “Nadra takes immense pride in the successful execution and launch of Somalia’s National Identification System, a testament to the power of collaboration and innovation. This achievement reinforces Pakistan’s vision for a more secure and prosperous Somalia, where every citizen has access to reliable identification. The National ID System will not only bolster security but also pave the way for inclusive development, financial empowerment, and improved governance.”
He said that the delivery of Somalia’s National ID complemented the government of Pakistan’s ‘Look Africa’ policy, where Nadra had been playing a pivotal role in providing secure identity and passport solutions under the transfer of technology to various governments in Africa, including Kenya, Sudan, and Nigeria, which held the largest ID database of over 100 million identities in Africa.
The Somalia National ID System is a state-of-the-art biometric identification system that will provide Somalis with a secure and universally recognised form of identification.
Published in Dawn, September 18th, 2023