Entertainers speak out against National Identification and Registration Bill

by November 13th, 2017

“Intrusive” and “hasty” are some of the words used by entertainers Yasus Afari, and Tony Rebel to describe the current parliamentary debate on the National Identification and Registration Bill (NIDS).

NIDS seeks to collect information from citizens which will include fingerprint and possibly retina scan, a vein pattern of the hand, footprint, toeprint, palm prints, and blood type.

Dub poet Yasus Afrai says the government needed to have had community consultations and as such, there is a genuine reason to question their motive.


Meanwhile, veteran reggae singer Tony Rebel is questioning the information being requested by the government and if plans are in place to safeguard and protect an individual’s identity.

The Jamaica Coalition for a Healthy Society (JCHS) is calling for the debate on NIDS in the Senate to be suspended until satisfactory nationwide public consultations have been held.

Meanwhile, the Government has claimed that NIDS is necessary to fulfill a ‘human right to identity’.

Anyone who does not enroll after three years of the NIDS implementation can be fined the sum of $100,000, or be subjected to other forms of punishment such as community work.

The debate continues.