The method to register members of the Pemba group in an effort to subject them with id playing cards has kicked off in Kwale.
This follows the popularity of the Pemba as an ethnic group in Kenya in a Particular Gazette Discover issued on January 30, 2023, by President Dr. William Ruto.
Their recognition follows that of different beforehand stateless communities, together with the Makonde from Tanzania and Mozambique in 2017, and the Shona from Zimbabwe in 2020.
In accordance with the United Nations (UN) a stateless individual is a person who just isn’t thought of to be a nationwide by any state below the operation of its legal guidelines.
It’s believed that the Pemba individuals entered Kenya from Zanzibar archipelago earlier than independence in 1963 and ventured into fishing as their most important financial exercise.
And when Kenya grew to become a republic in 1964 after independence, the Pembas had been neither registered as an indigenous tribe nor acknowledged as Kenyan residents.
Principal Secretary (PS) for Immigration and Citizen Companies Ambassador Julius Bitok says all Kenyans of the Pemba heritage will now be issued with related identification paperwork in accordance with the Structure.
Amb. Bitok urged members of the Pemba group residing within the coastal counties of Kwale, Mombasa, Kilifi and Lamu to come back out in massive numbers and register themselves as bonafide residents.
The PS stated their recognition as Kenyan nationals below the legislation places an finish to the group’s statelessness.
He stated the choice to acknowledge the stateless Pemba group as Kenyans demonstrates the federal government’s unwavering dedication to ending statelessness within the nation.
Amb. Bitok spoke at Kichakamkwaju space in Shimoni location of Lunga Lunga sub county of Kwale whereas supervising the issuance of the long-awaited Kenyan Identification Playing cards (ID) to members of the Pemba group.
It was pleasure and pleasure galore as lots of of the Pemba individuals turned out to be registered for nationwide ID playing cards bringing to an finish decade of wrestle to be acknowledged as Kenyans.
Bitok stated the federal government will be certain that the Pemba persons are issued with identification paperwork similar to ID playing cards, beginning certificates and passports that can allow them to take pleasure in their rights as Kenyan residents.
Accompanied by Kwale Deputy Governor (DG) Chirema Komba PS Bitok stated the registration and issuance of citizenship documentation will allow the Pemba individuals to totally contribute to Kenya’s growth and entry their basic human rights identical to different Kenyan communities.
He stated the rights embrace entry to schooling, well being care, social safety, monetary providers and becoming a member of the formal labour market.
The PS thanked the group members for preserving the peace whilst they struggled for recognition.
DG Kombo welcomed the nationwide authorities’s resolution to present the Pemba individuals citizenship saying this may enable members of the group to participate in nationwide constructing.
The chairman of the Pemba group in Kwale Shaame Hamisi recommended the steps the state is taking to resolve the long-term downside of statelessness for the Pemba individuals in Kenya.
An emotional Hamisi stated the members of the group really feel liberated since they’d take pleasure in all of the rights identical to different Kenyan nationals.
“Because the Pemba individuals in Kenya we’ve lived as stateless individuals since independence and trapped in authorized limbo that has brought on us untold struggling however thank God, we’ve lastly been granted citizenship,” he stated.
Hamisi stated with out the essential nationwide id playing cards, the group confronted many hurdles starting from failing to safe employment, registering cell phone SIM playing cards to opening financial institution accounts and even getting into some authorities workplaces and enterprise premises.
“However now as soon as stateless Pemba individuals who quantity greater than 7,000 see a future stuffed with hope and reduction,” he quipped.
By Hussein Abdullahi and Mwanasiti Salim