Malawi Breaks Regional Trends to Launch Biometric ID in Three Years

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By Sam Gazeley | 4Q 2020 | IN-5973


Identities Framework in Malawi


Over a three-year period, Malawi has developed from a country without any form of National ID system or centralized registry of peoples to a country with a high coverage identities infrastructure accompanied by a biometric ID card. Undertaking a National ID program is a significant undertaking for any country, with significant capital and expertise required across the value-chain, from enrollment of citizens biometric data, procuring raw credentials, personalization and installing physical/digital infrastructure for access to government or e-government services. This makes the Malawian project a significant achievement for the region, considering Malawi’s status as an emerging economy.

A Significant Achievement


Only as recently as 2017, Malawian citizens relied on piecemeal documentation such as voting cards and drivers’ licenses in a legacy format and existed as one of the only countries in the south of the continent to lack either a national citizen registry or a National ID system. The only consistent form of up-t…

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