Gen Odongo tasks new board to clean mess at NIRA

Friday February 14 2020

 Ms Ms Ruth Nvumetta Kavuma, a member of NIRA

L-R: Ms Ms Ruth Nvumetta Kavuma, a member of NIRA board, Mr Joseph Birobonwa, the board chairman and  Gen Odongo, during the inauguration of the new team.   


The Minister of Internal Affairs, Gen Jeje Odongo is concerned over throngs of people that perennially get stranded at the offices of National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA) in Kololo, due to inefficiency.

He said on Thursday that the failure by NIRA officials to effectively serve members of the public has shattered the reputation of the institution.

Gen Odongo was inaugurating the new NIRA board.

 “I encourage you to apply your minds to improve services [at NIRA] as quickly as possible,” he said. 

Parliament last year observed that NIRA faces a serious problem of understaffing whereby some staff members perform extra tasks which affects efficiency.

Ms Judy Obitre-Gama, the executive director of NIRA said that 50 percent of the job slots at the institution are vacant.


With a population of 40 million Ugandans, NIRA officials say, they have registered only 29 million people.

But Gen Odongo said that a sizeable number of people who are not citizens of Uganda were registered as Ugandans.

He said government intends to introduce Citizen Verification Committees to prevent non-Ugandans from getting national identity cards. 

“Today, it is the letter from the Local Council 1 chairman and a letter from the Division Internal Security Officer that are used to determine who is a citizen,” Gen Odongo said. 

The Board was tasked to devise means of standardising Local Council 1 letters that would be used as introduction letters before getting National Identity Cards. 

Mr Joseph Birobonwa, a former Electoral Commission vice chairperson, is the new board chairperson.

Other members are Ms Ruth Nvumetta Kavuma, Ms James Saaka, Mr Bemanya Twebaze, Dr Paul Kintu, Dr Chris Ndatira Mukiza, Maj. Gen. Apollo Gowa Kasiita and Dr Betty Kivumbi Nanyonga