Fun and games with the National ID card
Kipp is getting its ID card at last. But with the deadline looming, is anybody else?
December 14, 2010 3:22 by shafeer
Hurry people, hurry! You only have a few weeks to get registered for your National ID card! No, Kipp is being super serious this time… yes, we know we said that before, but this time we really mean it… yes, we said that before too, but now we really, really mean it: the deadline for an ID card is here.
Kipp can hear the collective sigh ringing out around the UAE. We’ve heard this before. Once upon a time the deadline (for expat professionals, at least) was the end of December 2008, then the end of February 2009, and now finally: December 31, 2010. Papers are full of that date today as the Emirates Identity Authority announces that we must all get cards or else, or at the very least register at a typing centre for a card, before the end of the month. The result has been a rush on typing centres, according to Emirates 24-7.
Finally cowed into getting our ID card, Kipp ambled in the direction of the nearest typing centre just last week. We got there to find the obligatory queue, which we joined. After half an hour, we got to the front and gave a few details. We were handed a form, we filled it out, and then they took our passport for five days. Apparently, the system was down. Kipp doesn’t like giving our passports to anyone (and weren’t we told not to, after the whole forged passport assassination thing last year?), but having little choice, we obliged.
And it wasn’t even so bad for us – spare a thought for the woman we saw as we went to collect our passport yesterday, who was being told she’d have to leave her passport for 15 days. Presumably, this means that the system is still struggling, and a backlog is building. Kipp is now at phase two, where we wait for a call to tell us where we have to go to get finger printed, etc. How many people are now stuck at phase one?
The call for our next step could come at any time (we wait, cat like, for the phone to ring), but the people in the office suggested it could be weeks off. That takes us into the new year – and for women like the one we saw at the centre, maybe even to February.
All of this leads us to suspect that this deadline could go the way of all the others. Particularly since the authority is yet to say whether action will be taken against those without cards.
What do you think? Have you got your card sorted? Will this deadline be enforced?