Desmond Tutu gets Smart ID

2013-07-25 13:27

Cape Town - Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu was elated to receive his ID smartcard on Thursday morning.

Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor handed the card to him in an envelope outside the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation building in Cape Town.

Wearing warm, casual clothes instead of his iconic purple robes, Tutu closely inspected the card and then erupted with laughter.

"This is the card and yes, it's got my mother's nose. I think Zapiro [the cartoonist] would probably be quite happy," he told reporters.


"When you contrast this with the dompas [apartheid passbook], you realise actually just how far we have travelled and the great honour that you give me to bring mine."

Tutu joked that there was now trouble in his household because his wife Leah was asking where her ID smartcard was. He marvelled at how light it felt.

"That we should have the technical ability to do this. You know, sometimes we take some of these things for granted. There are very many good things about our country and here is one of them; that you can have all the information about an individual captured in a card."

Pandor said she had asked several leaders to be the "pioneering guinea pigs" for the smart ID, which would eventually replace ID books.

Earlier in the month, former president Nelson Mandela received his ID smartcard as he celebrated his 95th birthday.

Other recipients of the first batch of cards include President Jacob Zuma, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela and former presidents Thabo Mbeki and FW de Klerk.


  • Sipho Friek Van Tonder - 2013-07-25 13:39

    when can I get mine ?? Minister.. Home affairs made a mistake M not Sipho m Gert friek Van Tonder

      Michael Kleber - 2013-07-25 14:35

      Where can you buy them ?

      Debbie du Plessis - 2013-07-25 15:26

      Im waiting for 1st Card Clone to happen ... seems like Home Affairs is just making it easier to steal people's identities!

      jerhone - 2013-07-25 16:17

      just wait Mr. ehh, ehh, ehh, soon you'll be getting your smartcard injected into your hand or your head, then we'll see how honoured you are

  • Sabelo Scott - 2013-07-25 13:40

    Zuma , Winnie & De Klerk , should have waited for the rest of us. They are nothing special.

      Zee Mbova - 2013-07-25 13:57

      Couldn't have said it better myself...

      Debbie du Plessis - 2013-07-25 14:01

      Wait until the first card cloning occurs then we shall see the Smart ID turn into Dumb ID... every other Government Fool Proof new project has been copied in days e.g. 2 lots of new Car Registration Plates, Mandela Notes... etc ---- at end of day how does this differ to the Dompass??? All are ID indicating who you are & you have to carry it like the Driver's Licence card -- only difference is the whole nation carries these on daily basis!

  • Richard Scully - 2013-07-25 13:45

    When do the people who are 30 who have not had an ID all their lives? Forget the ministers

      Linds Ron-House - 2013-07-25 16:51

      @Richard, thousands and thousands of ID books are destroyed every year as they're not collected. I got my first ID book before I turned 17. I still have it and still looks new. The only problem is that every time I produce it people say "is this you?"

  • Makhosonke Mqikela - 2013-07-25 13:47

    Welcome SA to the world of Digital Electronics. Watch-out criminal because with just a SWIPE one's whereabouts will be 'known' within 'nanoseconds'...

      John - 2013-07-25 14:21 SA nothing happens in "nano-seconds" (except corruption, government mofo's are fast on that note). This card is nothing special, Namibia had this for a long while now and everyone now thinks this is "ground breaking". The government must stop wasting money on gimmicks and keep what is working, not wasting money on unnecessary nonsense.

  • kalabafazi - 2013-07-25 13:48

    How come Zuma got a smart ID. He is anything but smart.

  • Zee Mbova - 2013-07-25 13:55

    Love me some Tutu it's not even funny :-)

  • Eugene Fourie - 2013-07-25 14:13

    And how much is this new gimmick going to cost us tax payers again?

      Sabelo Scott - 2013-07-25 14:44

      You people must have really miserable lives, to complain just for the sake of complaining, ever wondered how much fake ID's cost the country?

      Schalk W Burger - 2013-07-25 15:10

      @ Sabelo Scott. How long is this smart id card going to be "save" before some crooks will clone it like your bank card? Then we are back at square one and all the money spend on it gone.

  • Happy Moloto - 2013-07-25 14:20

    Im sure Nigerians already know how they are going fake this new ID's..the machines are already oiled..Anyway i have to say Desmond Tutu looks like the flying spaghetti monster on that ID photo..

  • Makhosonke Mqikela - 2013-07-25 14:26

    Since they contain individual's personal and confidential information I sincerely hope the do not get easily 'hacked'.

  • Hemlock - 2013-07-25 14:31

    More money that the citizens of RSA have to spend for some douchebag to get rich on!!!!

  • Costa Pistol - 2013-07-25 14:49

    Cool,if you can afford the R140.

  • Tshiamo Stevens - 2013-07-25 15:16

    In the UK a BBC panaroma documentary exposed the smart card ID's technology loopholes. After claims by the Uk Home Office about is security features. It was easily cloned and the presenter used it to open a bank account, enter and get out of the UK without being detected that it was a counterfeit. And you are talking about a first world country! The UK has been suspending the roll out of this technology after its loopholes get exposed the minute the IT industry thinks its ahead of criminals. It's better than the current one which every "South" African one has though! Good luck!

  • Russel Wolson - 2013-07-25 15:49

    To Michael Kleber, the same place you buy the fake driver's licences silly !!!

  • Victor van der Walt - 2013-07-25 16:17

    Whats the big deal?

  • mark.a.fysh - 2013-07-25 16:20

    Tagging the leaders first, then the zombies.

  • Colin Ashby - 2013-07-25 17:23

    Another tax we will have to pay

  • Paseka Mohalaleloa Patrick - 2013-07-31 12:16

    I wonder who won the tender?

  • pages:
  • 1