Identity commission to register 100 million Nigerians in 30 months – DG

The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) said on Thursday that it would capture 100 million Nigerians in the newlyintroduced biometrics database system in 30 months.

Briefing newsmen, NIMC Director-General, Mr Chris Onyemenam, said the gesture would ensure that the more than 100 million Nigerians without official identity cards were captured.

Onyemenam said the commission would register and issue a National Identity Number (NIN) and National Smart Card to every Nigerian from 16 years and above.

He said that the central database would capture all the detailed information about an individual.

He said the national identity database would harmonise and integrate all disparate databases such as voters’ registration information, drivers licence, sim registration and e-banking.

“The commission currently has a new reform mandate to provide unique identification numbers for citizens and legal residents to guarantee uniqueness through biometrics duplication.

“Nigeria lacks a comprehensive database for its citizens as 75 per cent of the available identity documents are fake or self-issued and they are sectoral silos without a common key.

“With a reliable national identity database in place, challenges of security and fraud would be dealt with because it would checkmate security threats.’’

Onyemenam said that the biometric database would enable individuals to prove their identity in a dependable manner by providing online and offline cost effective verification and authentication.

He said the project would provide standardised identity attributes and foster the orderly development of an identity sector, adding that it would ensure that Nigerians had a trusted National Identity Card System from time to time.

He said that the commission had been working with organsisations such as INEC and communication providers to get the details of Nigerians in that aspect.

“Everything is set for this project, the law is in place, the capacity infrastructure is there and the public private partnership is there to ensure that there is revenue that comes in for the sustenance of the project. ‘’

Earlier, Mr Aliyu Aziz, the Director, Identity Database Department, said that with the introduction of the biometric data base number for all Nigerians, organisations could easily get information about their staff.

“The introduction of this project means a forensic security future for Nigeria because it will contain all the information about a person and address the value preposition for proper database.

“It will involve areas such as payment services, transit, identity, economy, health and education. The card is authentic and cannot be duplicated; so even if it’s stolen it will be useless,’’ he said.