Tanzania hires Malaysia firm for Hi-tech ID project
By Our correspondent
Dar es Salaam-Over Sh200-billion national identification project which has been long awaited by the other EAC member states has been awarded to, Iris Corp Bhd of Malaysia and will commence production later this year.
The hi-tech ID’s in the region, are espected to easy the free movement of personel after the decision to remove visas and usage of passport at the frontiers of EAC member states when all member states come to use electronic ID’s.
“It is true a Malaysian company won the contract but then, because of the Easter holidays, the official communication to that effect has not been released, and the Barld would meet to announce the development to the public,” said Mr Maimu, the national ID authority Bard executive Director said.
Media reports in Malaysia reported yesterday that Iris Corp Bhd had won the five-year contract to issue 25 million National Identification cards (IDs) to qualifying Tanzanian citizens. The protracted deal, worth $149 million (about Sh200.2 billion) would involve procurement, supply, design, implementation, test, maintenance, support and commissioning of the national ID system based on modern Smartcard Technology.
Iris Corp Bhd announced on Friday that 36 months of the contract period would be for implementation while the other 24 months would involve maintenance and support services.
According to the company, the funds for the project would come from the Tanzanian government revenues and bank loans. Iris Corp Bhd also informed that it would set up a data centre and disaster recovery site, along with the required hardware, software including Automated Fingerprint Identification System and Services.
There would also be a National ID registry system and database including associated hardware, software, and services for the rollout of the enrolment system to 142 sites across the country and a personalization system at a centralised site. According to the information, the company would also undertake the necessary post-implementation maintenance and support services including supply of spare parts.
The signing of the contract puts to rest the long process to search for an appropriate company to run the project that had earlier been shrouded in corruption claims. The government was forced to cancel the tender process several times as reports suggested some crooked politicians had attempted to interfere in the process for personal gain.
The Hi-tech ID’s has been only in use in Rwanda, as Uganda and Kenya recently announced to begin the ID project.