Ugandans who have missed enrolment for National Identity cards will have to wait until 2016 following a government order to the National Identity card project management to close the registration process one month earlier than previously scheduled.
According to the project’s assistant head of communications Paul Bukenya, government has ordered the closure of the continuous registration process by Sunday January 11as opposed to Feburuary, 27, the earlier communicated date, on grounds that it is no longer cost effective due to a highly reducing turnout at enrolment centres which they argue (government) is failing the value-for money test.
“Government has decided to end it ahead of schedule because there is hardly value for money anymore,” Bukenya told The Sunrise in an interview in Kampala this week.
” With all the money being spent to keep enrolment officers and maintaining equipment in the field, it has reached a level where is it is no longer cost effective to continue with the process to the extent that some enrolment centres get only 10 applicants a day,” he added.
Government intends to save Ushs 4.5b which is spent, per month on allowances for enrolment officers, logistics and equipment maintenance among other expenditures
“The exercise of continuous registration of Ugandan citizens of 16 years and above for issuance of National Identity Cards shall end on Sunday January 11. All Ugandan citizens of 16 years and above who have not yet registered are advised to do so during the ongoing registration process,” the press statement from the National ID project management reads in part.
“Any person who may not have registered by 11th January 2015 will have to wait for the resumption of the registration exercise after the 2016 General Elections,” It adds.
Bukenya pointed out that the decision had been informed by the provisional results of the National Housing and Population Census which indicated that the population of Ugandan citizens of 16 years and above is 15,958596 persons, two millions below the original estimated target, a margin of error meaning that the ID national registration target has also been reduced by the same figure.
” Total enrollment as at 12th December 2014 stands at 15,775,522 applicants which represents 87.6% of original target population (18,000,000) and 98.9% of the preliminary Census results 2014 results (15,958,596)” partly reads a report from the ID project management.
Comparatively, the ID registration exercise previously aimed at enrolling an estimated target population of 18,000,000 Ugandan citizens as provided by UBOS which used projections based on the 2002 National Housing and population census (NHPC 2002)
Relatedly, Bukenya has appealed to the general public in Kampala business District to turn up to enrolment centres where they registered to collect their Identity cards.
“This is because 500,000 cards have so far been printed out of the 1,100,000 applicants who registered in Kampala,” Bukenya said explaining why some applicants might still be hesitant to turn up for their Identity cards before he confirmed that the printing process is expected to end by the end of August.