Do you really need a Huduma Namba? Know More

What is Huduma Namba?

Huduma Namba Registration Assistants At Work.

Huduma Namba is a unique identifying number issued to Kenyan citizens and foreigners. A person only gets the number by completing a NIIMS registration process. The number will act as a single source of identification for all people living in Kenya, including refugees.
The government will use Huduma Namba as a tool for national planning, project and resource allocation, social services, and infrastructural development based on local populations. It will help the state to serve people better by having enough information about them. When a person gets a unique number, it will be the identification document they need to access all government services.
In other words, Huduma Namba eliminates the necessity for having a National ID Card, driver’s license, birth certificate, and KRA PIN among other documents. Although these documents are still functional, the difference is they will be digitalised.

Do you need a Huduma Namba?

There has been a confusion about the necessity of the Huduma Namba. Various government officials have come out to spell out different
consequences of not getting this number, but some of their claims have been dismissed by the government. However, two statements by top ranking government officials stand out as they haven’t been refuted by the government.
The first is by the Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i who indicated that those who don’t have a Huduma Namba will experience slow access to government services . The other statement was made by the government spokesman, Erick Kiraithe, in a recent
interview on Citizen TV , where he suggested that Kenyans won’t be able to access certain crucial services without the number.

From these statements, it is clear that while it might not be necessary to get the Huduma Namba now, it might eventually replace your Identification Card in future. This means that you might not be able to access services that you are currently accessing using your ID number. If this is the case, then you need a Huduma Namba.


California considers charging residents a tax fee for sending text messages

text message

text message

California’s Public Utilities Commission is considering a plan that would charge mobile phone users a fee for sending text messages, according to recent public law filings.

The proposal is partially due to landline era legislation coupled with the fact the people are shifting patterns away from voice calls in favor of texting.

California is determining whether or not surcharges and user fees on text messaging comply with Public Purpose Programs, which use tax revenue to make telecommunications services accessible to low-income residents. The programs, which date back to the 1930s, were given a facelift in the late 1990s, allowing individual states to impose requirements to preserve what’s referred to as a “universal service.”

During the rise of the internet, the telecommunications industry was able to elude these taxes by offering “information services” like email and web browsing.

However, as mobile phone users shifted their behavior away from making phone calls, voice call revenue for these state programs has dropped by about a third, from $16.5 billion in 2011 to $11.3 billion in 2017, according to law filings.

Meanwhile, the budget for subsidizing poorer users has risen by almost half, from $670 million in 2011 to $998 million in 2017, the filings said.

The wireless industry argues added fees would put carriers at a higher disadvantage since messaging services like Apple’s iMessage, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger would not be charged under the proposed legislation.

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The Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association, a trade organization that represents the U.S. wireless communications industry, said in legal filings to the California commission that it has “repeatedly” demonstrated that text messaging is, in fact, an information service.

“Subjecting wireless carriers’ text messaging traffic to surcharges that cannot be applied to the lion’s share of messaging traffic and messaging providers is illogical, anticompetitive and harmful to consumers,” CTIA said in the filings.

While state regulators aren’t scheduled to vote on the proposal until next month, wireless customers have taken to social media to express their concerns about the bill.

Twitter user @Myblueheavenn writes, “Of course California wants to tax your text messages. They would tax your toilet use if they could.”