Kenya: Amnesty International Kenya welcomes High Court judgement on privacy-invasive national ID system

Amnesty International Kenya welcomes the decision by the three-judge bench to uphold the right to privacy of citizens and to stop the mandatory collection of information under the new National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS) also known as “Huduma Namba”.
“Kenya’s mandatory biometric registration system legal framework poses a massive risk to the right to privacy of citizens, foreign nationals and refugees living in the country. Parliament should swiftly repeal the invasive sections and expedite the National Taskforce’s Data Protection Bill to bring forth a legal framework for safeguarding personal data” said Irũngũ Houghton, Amnesty International Kenya’s Executive Director.
“No country in the world has passed a law enabling it to collect DNA samples and biometric data from its entire population without even a basic legal framework for data protection. There must be concrete safeguards for data storage, security and independent oversight of the system.”
Amnesty congratulates The Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC), the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) and the Nubian Rights Forum (NRF) for their petition.
The current legal NIIMS framework raises serious human rights concerns including the fundamental right to privacy as enshrined in Article 31 of the Kenyan Constitution and Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
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