By Arthur Arnold Wadero
The government plans to harvest DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid properties) of citizens and issue to holders new, or replacement, National Identity (ID) cards containing such genetic information.
Elements of how the scheme will run are still under discussion, but Gen David Muhoozi, the State minister for Internal Affairs, told parliamentary plenary late Thursday evening that the government will issue “smart digital” IDs going forward once the current versions expire.
The government through the National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA) began issuing National IDs in 2014, and the first batch expires in 2024, because each, like a passport, is valid for only 10 years.
“Expected outcomes of the exercise shall include…substitution of the (expiring) National ID cards upon expiry, and [their] upgrading … to a smart card [Electronic ID or EID] and creation of personal digital identity, upgrade of the verification system and integration of the Iris recognition biometric technology and DNA in the NIRA system,” the minister said.