e-Citizen To Have More Government Services,says CS Owalo

eliud owalo
Written by Vincent Ombati

Information, Communication, and the Digital Economy Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo has revealed the digitization of more government services in the e-citizen platform. The move comes after President William Ruto directed the digitization of 5000 services within 6 months.

Owalo, speaking during an interview with a local TV station yesterday, said the government is in the final stage of taking over the e-Citizen platform from a private entity, which has been managing it. Adding that the process awaits a nod from the Attorney General.

To facilitate the digitization process, the CS said the government is first placing adequate ICT infrastructure in place. This will replace the idea of citizens flashing out their IDs whenever they need a government service. Some of the measures include rolling out 100,000km fiber optic cable and having all government records on a digital database. The digitization process will be outsourced to different service providers.

The CS also said the government will issue digital identity to facilitate virtual transactions between the government and members of the public. The digital identity borrows the concept of Huduma Number which Owalo said was a good idea but not well rolled out. “The pitfall that befell Huduma Namba is that there was no adequate sensitization to the citizens at the beginning and it was being launched at a time when there was also a crowded political atmosphere so people there were suspicious about it,” he said.

The CS has been launching government-sponsored WiFi hotspots across the country to meet President Ruto’s initiative to establish 25,000 free public wifi hotspots. This is in line with the Kenya Kwanza government’s plan to make the digital economy a reality.