On Friday, Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo stated that the Government would soon start producing modern digital national identification cards with help from a Dubai company, G-42, in association with company partially owned by the German Government.
The project, which Jagdeo expects to begin in the upcoming months, would create new cards for citizens and residents that would be authorized by law.
“We are not touching the voters’ identification card, GECOM can continue to issue that. There will be legislation next year for a new ID card that will have a chip in it for nationals and people who are resident in Guyana,” he explained.
He said that among other things, the cards would have information such as blood group information, information from driver’s licenses, and tax identification numbers.
In addition, if a foreign national enters Guyana with a three-year work permit, they will be given one of these cards, which can store a lot of biometric data, rather than passing through immigration. He said that using the card, those with work permits could visit the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) to create a PIN number and perform transactions at commercial banks.
“The moment the three-year work permit expires, things start shutting down, you would have to go and renew it so we can see who is in our country,” he said.
People with work permits would have one color of cards, whereas Guyanese people would have a different color.
A mechanism will also be put in place to spot cases when people could have duplicate biometric data. The Vice President believes that Guyanese will be able to avoid the complex immigration procedures after the deployment of the digital identification cards.