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Explainer: Marriage made easier through e-Citizen portal

The government on Friday launched the digitisation of all government services in a culmination of Kenya Kwanza administration’s promise to eliminate paperwork in government offices.

During the event at Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), the government said Kenyans can now access more than 5,000 services on the e-citizen portal.

Among the services showcased on the e-citizen are easy access to marriage certificates and marriage applications.

This is in line with Article 45 of the Constitution, which provides for the recognition of the family as the basic natural and fundamental unit of society, and therefore to be recognised and protected by the State.

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While the Marriage Act of 2014 recognises five types of marriages, namely civil, Christian, Hindu, customary and Islamic, the purpose of the e-Citizen platform is to bring the same services closer to the people.

The platform also showcases the services offered by the Marriage Registrar, which can be accessed over the phone.

With e-citizen, those who get married can apply for a marriage certificate, go for interviews and receive their marriage certificate online.

However, for those who want to get married for the first time through the Attorney General’s office, the two must give at least 21 days written notice to the Registrar and the marriage must be solemnised within 90 days of the date of the notice.

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While presiding over the wedding of Nicholas Ngunjiri and Judith Jelagat Kemboi at KICC, President William Ruto said the couple had been randomly selected from hundreds of applicants.

“They booked their wedding online, they did everything on e-Citizen and today they were going to see the registrar and I requested the requested the registrar to have a conversation with these good people. Thank you for agreeing,” President Ruto said.

According to the Registrar General’s office, online marriage services are currently only available in Nairobi County. However, marriage registrations can be done at local registrar offices including Nakuru, Eldoret, Kisumu, Malindi, Embu, Meru, Kisii and Machakos.

Among the benefits that the new couple gained for being part of the launch is four-night government sponsored honeymoon in Diani.

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