Home Affairs offices have been set up at Standard Bank and FNB, and groups of employees are being invited to get their Smart IDs as part of an application system test.
The project aims at doing away with the green barcoded identity books.
The cards were issued by Standard Bank and First National Bank (FNB) to employees at the institutions’s head offices in the Johannesburg CBD.
Back in February this year, president Jacob Zuma announced during his State of the Nation Address that the department would be partnering with a number of local banks to issues citizens with ID cards.
Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba today launched a pilot project, initially with two FNB and Standard Bank branches, with a Nedbank site set to go live during the month.
Mokgola confirmed that the application process would be the same as if applying at DHA itself, with collections also being processed at the respective banks.
“The next phase of the pilot, scheduled to begin in November of this year, will involve bank customers beginning applications through the eChannel portal, and completing their applications at the bank”, said Gigaba in a speech that was recorded on his Twitter account.
He added that the department planned to eradicate the green bar-coded books within five years.
“Our hope is that by accessing the banks’ 20 million clients we will dramatically increase the speed, efficiency and convenience of our roll-out”, said Gigaba. Other countries had shown interest in undertaking the technology, and were unable to implement it unfortunately.
The department was seeking ways to have qualifying school children apply for the smart cards at schools, instead of going to the department’s offices.