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Ethiopia tenders for biometric registration kits as digital ID scheme takes shape

Digital ID coming to the Bahamas, progresses in Philippines
Ethiopia tenders for biometric registration kits as digital ID scheme takes shape
 

Ethiopia’s federal government is seeking a contractor to supply biometric registration kits as the country’s National ID Program (NIDP) takes form.

According to an invitation to bid from the Office of the Prime Minister, the contract which will be executed in two lots, consists of the supply of 300 biometric kits with carrying cases and 50 batteries, and a separate lot for 15 mobile registration kits with carrying cases.

The new Ethiopian national ID system includes both fingerprint and iris biometrics to ensure the uniqueness of each digital identity.

Per the bid notice, contractors have until Monday 9 May 2022 to submit their bids and the bid files will be unveiled same day in the presence of representatives of bidding companies.

Meanwhile, as part of ongoing efforts to roll out a foundational ID system for the country, the NIDP is today 5 April organizing a webinar to discuss the draft digital identification proclamation with more stakeholders drawn from different backgrounds such as international partners, government ministries as well as regional authorities.

An earlier public consultation on the draft proclamation, held on 11 March, saw the participation of about 200 stakeholders who represented federal government ministries and public institutions, regional governments, civil society organizations, human rights organizations as well as international groups.

Ethiopia recently expanded its partnership with MOSIP, the India-based open-source modular identity system, in preparation for a biometric registration pilot that aims to enroll about 100,000 citizens for the national ID scheme.

Bahamas plans digital ID rollout in 2023

Prime Minister Philip Davis of the Bahamas has announced plans to put in a place a National Identification System (NIS) and the issuance of digital ID cards to citizens by the first quarter of next year, EW News reports.

The PM made the disclosure as he addressed a Digital Transformation Symposium and said the digital ID system will be a springboard for the country’s digital economy development ambitions.

According to the premier, the government is also working to bring experts on board who can accompany efforts for the effective implementation of the digital ID scheme which will enable citizens of the Bahamas to enjoy access to a number of government services.

“I look forward to the rollout of the NIS over the next 10 months and the subsequent distribution of the national e-identity card to citizens of The Bahamas in early 2023,” EW News quoted the PM as saying.

Civil ID cards again allowed for UAE border crossing by Omanis

Authorities of the Sultanate of Oman have said the civil ID cards can again be used by Omani and other Gulf Cooperation Council country travelers crossing the land border with the United Arab Emirates.

Muscat Daily reports that the move, which had earlier been suspended as a result of the COVID pandemic, is resuming and the Royal Oman Police (ROP) say other citizens of the Gulf Cooperation Council can use their respective ID cards to travel to     Oman.

The Omani Health Minister was quoted as saying the move to resume travel with the ID was confirmed by the Inspector General of Police and Customs.

Over 60M registrants so far for PhilID

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) has revealed that the total number of those who have had their biometrics collected for the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) is more than 60.4 million, as of 16 March – a remarkable achievement amid the challenges triggered by the pandemic, Manila Bulletin writes.

“Despite the previous challenges posed by COVID-19 during the early implementation of the PhilSys program, the PSA achieved its targets successfully,” comments PSA Undersecretary Dennis S. Mapa, National Statistician and Civil Registrar General in a statement.

“We thank our partners and the millions of Filipinos for their cooperation despite the limitations brought about by the pandemic. With their continued support, the PSA is confident that we will be able to register more Filipinos in the next months,”

In a related development, the PSA announced recently that Muslim registrants for the PhilID are not required to take off their face coverings during photo capture sessions for enrollment, according to the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

The face coverings in question are the hijab — a cloth usually wrapped around the head and neck by female Muslims, and the taqiyah — the skull cap worn by males.

In a news advisory issued by the PSA, the authority reminded citizens to carry out the registration without contravening other provisions of the law especially those on false information or double registration.

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