THE National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), at the weekend, said plans were underway to outsource the personalising and printing of the National e-ID Card to private printing bureaus.
It said this would help clear the backlog of the unprinted cards and allow for prompt collection of these cards by their owners.
Director-General of the commission, Mr Aliyu Aziz, in his explanation, said outsourcing the card printing to other printing bureaus in Nigeria would also ensure that Nigerians who enrolled for the National Identification Number (NIN) would get the National e-ID Card immediately or within a maximum period of seven days.
Aziz, in a statement issued by the Head of Corporate Communications, Loveday Ogbonna, in Abuja, also disclosed that so far, over 11 million unique data had been registered into the National Identity Database (NIDB).
In his breakdown, he said about one million National e-ID Cards had been printed, adding that over 400,000 of these cards had since been issued to their owners.
The Director-General also pointed out that most of the unissued cards were lying in the NIMC state offices, saying “the owners are yet to come and collect them.”
While stating the financial status of the commission, he said: “Although the commission is recently facing funding challenges which seems to be slowing down its planned activities and timeliness; this was not peculiar to the commission as the country is currently undergoing economic restructuring and scarcity of funds, as such, allocations are not readily made available to MDAs, including NIMC.
He, however, affirmed that: “This is a temporary interruption that will soon be over, as government is geared towards reinvigorating the funding mechanism for the commission.
“However, the funding challenge has not deterred NIMC from carrying out its obligations, as it has continued to provide service at its over 400 enrolment centres across the country and the number of citizens who have obtained their NIN has continued to increase, even as more Nigerians have been urged to go to the closest NIMC enrolment centres to register.
“NIMC has also refocused its efforts on the harmonisation of data with other agencies, as it has become imperative to ensure we ramp up the records in the National Identity Database to deliver better service to the nation.”
On the harmonisation of data with banks, he said: “We have commenced harmonisation with the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) on the Bank Verification Number (BVN) records, so, anyone that has registered for the BVN will get NIN. So far, we have processed two million records from the BVN data collected.
“In addition, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has also agreed to release data from the ongoing Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards registration exercise to the commission, all these are in line with the Federal Government’s directive to sister agencies collecting biometrics to harmonise and integrate with the NIMC being the central repository of biometric data in Nigeria.”
He, however, projected that the commission should have over 100 million record of Nigerians in the central database.
His words: “By 2019, it is projected that NIMC should have over a 100 million unique record at the central database.
“At that time, we would have commenced the enforcement of the mandatory use of the NIN for all services and transactions requiring the authentication and verification to confirm individual’s identity.
“At that time also, whoever that has not enrolled (and is not a child) will be required to pay a token in order to get enrolled for the NIN. So it is advisable for everyone to get enrolled and get the NIN before that times comes.”