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New fees for IDs in Kenya, and why the price is rising

New fees for IDs in Kenya, and why the price is rising

In a recent development, Kenyan citizens who have reached the age of 18 and are seeking to obtain their Identity Cards (ID) will now need to allocate a sum of Sh1,000 for this purpose. The change was formally announced in a Gazette Notice, dated November 6, by Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki. This announcement marks the end of the longstanding practice of providing ID cards free of charge to eligible Kenyan citizens.

Additionally, for those who require replacements for their existing IDs, the government has raised the fee substantially. The new charge for ID replacements is set at Sh2,000, which represents a significant increase from the previous fee of Sh100.

The authority for these revisions to the fees and levies on ID services was granted by the Cabinet Secretary for National Treasury and Economic Planning, in accordance with Regulation 60 of the Public Finance Management (National Government) Regulations, 2015. This shift in policy has been detailed in the official gazette notice.

To apply for an initial ID, Kenyan citizens can visit the National Registration Bureau or Huduma Centres offices, which are conveniently located throughout the country. National Registration Bureau offices can be found within County Commissioners’ offices or Chiefs’ camps.

During the application process, applicants are required to complete a form, entering in their biographical data. Subsequently, fingerprinting and passport photographs are taken to verify their identity. It’s important to note that only individuals who have reached the age of 18 years are eligible to receive their identification cards.

Once the application has been approved, a waiting card will be issued to the applicant. This waiting card should be retained until the processed ID card is ready for collection, at which point it should be surrendered as part of the process.

Why are all these new fees being implemented by government departments?

We are seeing new charges coming into place all over the country, with rumours of new taxes and increased fees coming seemingly every day. There are a whole host of reasons why Kenyans will now be expected to pay a lot more for government services.

The global economy is presently suffering with obvious uncertainty. Conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East are two of the more obvious causes of this. High inflation rates in other parts of the world means that many peoples from many different countries are getting less out of their currency. This is contributing to a dip in global trade.

Couple these factors with the fact that Kenya is presently overburdened with loan repayments to the World Bank and you begin to understand part of why the Kenyan government is in need of cash. Kenya’s government loans are structured in foreign currency and because, by in large, the Kenyan shilling is weakening against these more stable currencies, Kenya’s government has to generate a lot more shillings to pay back its dollar and euro loans.

All of this is contributing to making being a Kenyan in Kenya a lot more expensive.


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