As from April 1 all Zanzibaris were required to have identity cards. The purpose is to identify residents of Zanzibar and provide Zanzibaris with documents allowing them easy movement within the East African region. The identification card project, which started in June 2005, was undertaken by an Israel-US firm, Super Com, at a cost of about $2 million. Civil servants need to show them before getting their salaries. To qualify for a card, persons must be Tanzanians of Zanzibar origin or have been resident in Zanzibar for at least 10 years. The measure was implemented amid escalating incidents of armed robbery on the islands – suspected to have been committed by non-Zanzibaris – as well as civil service fraud in which the government has lost more than $1 million annually to ghost workers – IRIN.

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