Legal Clinic: My futile search for a dependency pass from eCitizen

The frustration you face originates from the e-Citizen platform’s inability to decipher your commands due to its programmed chronological nature. 

What you need to know:

  • For a foreign national to acquire the Alien card, the following must be provided.
  • A dully-filled, signed online application form 50 and presented to the Immigration office at Nyayo House, Nairobi, accompanied or supported by; copy of a valid travelling passport, whose purpose is to prove the applicant’s nationality and identity.
  • Two recently coloured passport size photographs pressed against a white background, taken not more than twelve months before the date of application.

Dear Mr Mukoya,

The Kenyan Government requires everyone to use the eCitizen platform to process anything related to immigration. That is agreeably a smart move. However, I have tried to access the system, and the response I get is that I already have a profile. After requesting an option to reset my password, I do not get a response, and neither are my calls to the support number answered by a real person, but runs in a loop. No help there.

I am married to a Kenyan, and so I have been seeking a dependency pass. I often get in and out of Kenya regularly. Since July 2020, the system has demanded that I should have Foreign Certificate Number, which I do not possess. I needed to create the Foreign Resident Account, and I entered my ID number (which is different in other countries, even in Kenya) and completed the form, but the submit button gave me an X sign. Then I noticed I had to validate the ID Number and First name information. When I clicked on the validate button, I got the message: “The provided ID Number was not found.” I got stuck while creating an account. At the top of the page, I noticed the caption: “Residents with a valid Foreigner Certificate”, and here I am trying to get one through the creation of an account. If I try to create an account, alien Card, etc, it redirects me to the page to create an account on eCitizen, and the top area asks for an ID number and first name, and I cannot proceed any further. As it stands, without the eCitizen account, nothing can take place, and all links to create any pass, ID Card or certificate returns you to this page as the entry point. Your assistance would be much appreciated.

Terry


Hi Terry,

You are right about a non-responsive e-Citizen platform.  You have a right, as enshrined in the Citizen and Immigration Act of 2011, to acquire a dependency pass. While not vouching for the system’s efficiency nor its capacity to offer relevant responses to your efforts, there is a process you must follow for the e-Citizen platform to serve you well. The frustration you face originates from the e-Citizen platform’s inability to decipher your commands due to its programmed chronological nature. Before applying for dependency pass, which is defined at Section 21 (1) of the Citizen and Immigration Regulations (2012), as a document issued to a person whose spouse, parent, or guardian is lawfully entitled to enter Kenya, any foreign national must first acquire an Alien Card or foreign certificate for identification and transaction(s).Part VII of the Citizen and Immigration Act at Section 56 (2) directs that any foreign national residing in Kenya for a continuous period exceeding three months be registered with an immigration officer and notify change of address, travelling or otherwise in such manner as may be prescribed. From the text of your question, this seems to be your real situation. For a foreign national to acquire the Alien card, which is equivalent to the Kenyan national Identity card in terms of functionality, the following must be provided: a dully-filled, signed online application form 50 and presented to the Immigration office at Nyayo House, Nairobi, accompanied or supported by; a) copy of a valid travelling passport, whose purpose is to prove the applicant’s nationality and identity: b) two recently coloured passport size photographs pressed against a white background, taken not more than twelve months before the date of application. For your case, it may be necessary to include the marriage certificate to attest that your wife is Kenyan. This will likely reduce opportunistic hindrances for someone wanting to know why you are to be in the country for a period exceeding ninety days. Once this registration process is over, and as claimed by the Immigration Department, you will receive a notification to collect your Foreign Certificate, which will have a unique identification number recognisable by the Kenyan e-Citizen platform. For step-by-step instructions, including the creation of log-in account, please visit https://fns.immigration.go.ke/infopack/fns/fns/.

Dependency pass

Following successful access to e-citizen, a foreign national is required to complete and sign Form 28, an online Dependent Pass form. This form should be supported by a detailed and signed cover letter from the applicant addressed to the Director of Immigration Services, explaining the need to have the dependency pass; two recent coloured passport size photographs of the Dependent: a copy of a valid national passport / National ID (bio-data page) for both the applicant and the Dependent. In your case, a copy of the foreign certificate will be required; evidence of the relationship between the applicant and the dependant such as duly certified copies of marriage certificate: proof of sufficient and assured income to sustain self and the dependent; if necessary, any other evidence necessitating the application of a dependency pass, in the form of a medical condition, disability, age and other special circumstances. You have not mentioned whether you hold any work permit. Should that be the case, then a valid copy of the work permit will also be required six months before the application.

Mr Mukoya is a lawyer with over 17 years’ experience. He’s the Executive Director, Legal Resources Foundation. Legal query? E-mail [email protected]

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