Uhuru Appoints Ex-IEBC Boss as Data Commissioner

President Uhuru Kenyatta during a past press address. /FILE

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday, October 13 appointed former IEBC Director of Voter Education Immaculate Kassait to be Kenya’s first Data Commissioner.

The role was formed following the imposition of the Data Protection Act, 2019.

Her name was forwarded to the National Assembly soon afterwards, which will vet her for the position within 21 days.

Ex-IEBC boss Immaculate Kassait. /FILE

If successful, she will be in charge of overseeing the implementation and the enforcement of the data protection rights, establishing and maintaining a register of data controllers as well as data processors.

The holder of a master’s degree in business administration from United States International University- Africa (USIU-Africa) will also oversee data processing operations and verify whether the processing of data is conducted in accordance with the regulations.

She will hold the office for six years, with the Salaries and Remuneration Commission set to advise on the remuneration.

The Data Protection Act, 2019 created a framework for the safe custody of Kenyans’ data to prevent any unauthorised exploitation of their information.

The data commissioner will have powers to investigate any complaint by any person regarding the infringements of their data rights.

The act categorised the sensitive personal data as a person’s race, health status, ethnic social origin, conscience, belief, genetic data, biometric data, property details, marital status, family details including names of the person’s children, parents, spouse or spouses, sex or the sexual orientation.

Kenyans have the right to be informed about the use of their personal data and to withdraw consent at any time.

“A data subject has a right to object to the processing of their personal data, unless the data controller or data processor demonstrates compelling legitimate interest for the processing which overrides the data subject’s interests, or for the establishment, exercise or defence of a legal claim,” the Data Protection Act 2019 states.

The digital revolution has led to the collection of a lot of Kenyans’ data by different organisations and institutions such as schools, telecommunication companies and mobile phone apps.

Eric Amunga, alias Amerix was suspended from Twitter on Tuesday, October 6 after alleged infringement of copyright grounds.

The patron of the popular #MasculinitySaturday trend on Twitter told 254news.co.ke that a user had accused him of using his photo of President Uhuru Kenyatta taken during a video conference with Heads of State from the East African Community at State House in Nairobi.

Twitter found the copyright claims against him invalid and lifted the suspension of his account on Tuesday, October 13.

President Uhuru Kenyatta chairing a cabinet meeting on October 8, 2020. /PSCU
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