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Kenya - Apply for a National Identity

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Apply In-Person:

In Kenya

  1. All initial Nation Identity Card applications are to be made to the Department of Civil Registration Offices at the District Officer's Office or deputy county commissioners office or chief office, closest to the applicant’s residential jurisdiction. Ministry of Interior & Coordination of National Government Contact Details
  2. Here the applicant will be required to submit both copies and originals of the following documents to the officer at the registrar of persons office/section.
    • Applicant’s birth certificate or birth clinic card
    • A copy of your parents/guardian’s identity card or birth clinic card
    • Applicant can also produce their school leaving certificate if they don’t have a birth certificate.
    • In the case where one or both parents are deceased, an applicant will be required to provide a death certificate or burial permit.
  3. After submitting the required documents, the applicant is issued an Application for Identity card Form 23. This form can be found in any office of a register of persons and all District officers’ offices.
  4. Once issued with the form legible complete all the relevant sections i.e (Your name/ Date of birth/ Gender/ Father’s name/ Mother’s name/ Marital Status/ Husband’s name/Husband ID no. /District of birth/ Tribe/ Clan / Family/ Home District/ Division/ Constituency/ Location/ Sub Location/ Village/ Estate/ Home Address/ Occupation)
  5. Then check the boxes for the relevant necessary documents needed for the application of the ID process. Your signature (to certify all the information you have given is correct) and date of application.
  6. After accurately filling in all the required information, submit the form to the chief or assistant chief of your area. This is for verification that you are from that area.
  7. This is followed by the signing of the form by the District officer. After that, the application form goes through the following stages:
  8. Fingerprints section- The applicant’s fingerprints are taken; Attachment of copies of the supporting documentation. The application will then be registered and then forwarded to a centralized office for processing of the national identity card which is approximately a period of two months.
  9. The applicant is then issued a waiting card/slip which should be surrendered when collecting the identity card.

Applying from Outside Kenya

  1. Applicants should visit the nearest Kenya Diplomatic (embassy/ consulate/ High Commission) and express their interest at the front desk.
  2. Submit the required documents to be validated by the embassy staff and obtain the Nation identity card Application Form Reg. 136C. A list of the required documentation and copies of the application forms can also be downloaded via Kenya’s Diplomatic website (if available) e.g.
  3. Along with the completed application form, submit the required documents (listed below), pay the required application fee, and provide fingerprints in person. At the time of submission, a waiting card/slip as an acknowledgment will be issued to the applicant.
  4. Processing of IDs takes approximately eight weeks, however, this period may vary from one embassy to another.
  5. The application file is then forwarded to Kenya's centralized production center for processing. Upon successful processing, the Identity card is returned to the embassy/consulate where the application was filed to be issued/ collected by the client against the waiting card/slip.

Please Note
Applicants who want their processed National Identity Card sent to them by post are advised to attach one of the following to their request(s):

  1. A registered self-addressed envelope with the appropriate stamps (letter recommendée);
  2. A pre-paid envelope from any recognized courier service provider.

Please note: Not all embassies offer the post/mail return service (please consult with the embassy)


Required Documents[edit]

Requirements in Kenya

  • Duly completed and signed National identity card application form 23.
  • Birth Certificate
  • In the absence of a Birth certificate, please provide the following
    • An affidavit from the area chief
    • Birth clinic card.
    • Any other proof of records (e.g. school transcripts).
  • Proof of change of surname for applications due to change of surname
  • One copy of each parent’s identity document (If one or both parents are Kenyans, copies of their ID Cards are required. If one of the parents is a foreigner, a copy of their passport is required.)
  • In the case where one or both parents are deceased, an applicant will be required to provide a death certificate or burial permit.
  • 2 recent coloured passport-sized photographs

If naturalized,

  • Bring the citizenship registration certificate.

Applying from Outside Kenya Requirements:

  • Duly completed and signed: Application for Identity card Form Reg. 136C
  • Original 1st generation ID for holders of 1st generation IDs
  • Applicant’s copy of Kenyan birth certificate
  • Two (2) passport-size photographs were recently taken on a white background.
  • Copy of applicant’s Kenya passport bio-data page (page with the picture and information).
  • Copy of Identity card for parent/parents
  • Copy of Registration certificate (for Kenyans by Registration).
  • Residence permit/Naturalisation certificate/proof of having regained Kenya citizenship and or declared Kenya citizenship
  • A secure, registered, and trackable self-addressed envelope with prepaid postage for the dispatch of your documents. The envelope should have sufficient postage (not less than 500g) clearly indicating full names and popostcodeor the applicant.( if applicable)

NB: All foreign documents are to be certified and stamped by a Notary, Solicitor, or Commissioner for oaths

Office Locations & Contacts[edit]

Department of Civil Registration - Head Office
Ministry of Interior & Coordination of National Government
Hass Plaza 4th Floor,
Lower Hill Road,
Nairobi, Kenya
P.O Box 49179- 00100
Tel: +254-20-2714987/8
Fax: 2714989
Email: [email protected]
Kenya’s Diplomatic MissionsContact Details


  • All citizens of Kenya who are 18 years and above are eligible for this service.


  • No fees are charged for this service in Kenya.

Note: if the application is filed abroad, the applicant will be charged a postal fee that varies from one consulate/embassy to another; please consult with the nearest Kenya mission for more information.


  • The identity card is valid for a lifetime and is only considered invalid after someone’s death or when one acquires another country’s nationality. This only applies to individuals born in Kenya, for foreigners, it is only valid when one is still a country’s citizen (Kenya)

Documents to Use[edit]

Sample Documents[edit]

Please attach sample completed documents that would help other people.

Processing Time[edit]

  • The time around for processing the application in Kenya is approximately 2 months, while for an abroad application is within 14 weeks.

Related Videos[edit]

Videos explaining the procedure or to fill the applications.
Attach videos using the following tag <&video type='website'>video ID|width|height<&/video&> from external websites.
Please remove the '&' inside the tags during implementation.
Website = allocine, blip, dailymotion, facebook, gametrailers, googlevideo, html5, metacafe, myspace, revver,
sevenload, viddler, vimeo, youku, youtube
width = 560, height = 340, Video ID = Can be obtained from the URL of webpage where the video is dkisplayed.
e.g In the following url '' Video ID is 'Y0US7oR_t3M'.


  • The Department of National Registration Bureau was established in 1978 to implement and enforce the Registration of Persons Act (Cap 107), Laws of Kenya. The Act provides for compulsory identification, registration, and issuance of identity cards to all persons who are citizens of Kenya and who have attained the age of eighteen years and above.

Required Information[edit]

  • Full name of the applicant
  • Full names of the applicant’s parents/guardian
  • Place/date of birth
  • Home County
  • District
  • Ward
  • Clan
  • Declaration by the applicant

Need for the Document[edit]

  • A National Identity Card is a document issued by the government to citizens of the Republic of Kenya to prove citizenship. The law requires that every Kenyan 18 years and above be registered and obtain an ID Card.
  • National Identity Cards play an important role in the security, social economic, and political development of the country through the identification of Kenyan citizens, facilitating the voting process, and promoting economic activities.

Information which might help[edit]

There are four categories of applications for identity cards, namely:

  • Not Previously Registered (initial registration). No fees are paid to access this service.
  • Change of particulars resulting from a change of name(s) and residence which attracts a fee of Kshs.300 and 1000(Depending on the request).
  • Replacement of lost identity cards.
  • Issuing of alien cards to foreigners residing in Kenya.

Other uses of the Document/Certificate[edit]

Other uses of the National Identity Card

  • Required to access government aid/funding/support
  • Required when applying for a passport
  • Required when applying for other civil and registration documents i.e birth certificate/death certificate/marriage certificate. etc.
  • Required during enrolment to tertiary education
  • When applying for employment. etc.

External Links[edit]

Place some external links which might help.


More information which might help people.