3rd October, 2019
The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) says it is refocusing more attention on issuing National Identity Number (NIN) to speed up the process of enrolments by way of saving the cost of producing cards due to paucity of funds.
The Director-General of NIMC, Engr. Aliyu Aziz said this in a report issued to newsmen by the Department of Corporate Communications of NIMC on Thursday in Abuja.
Aziz said the commission had examined the situation and understood the importance of identity, hence the need to focus on the issuance of NIN before the cards will be ready in a later date.
“Though, the basic is the person whose biometric information appears on the NIN, which help to identify who the person is and it is only the biometric information of the person that distinguishes him from another person.
“So, what we do is that we take the biometric and use it to generate numbers randomly and assigned to the individual, after that, NIMC will now issue a general multipurpose card to individuals for the purpose of electronic transactions but since we started, we have not achieved much result.
“So, with recession, we now refocus our attention to the issuance of the numbers because we have complicated projects and we needed to break it.
“We now focus on the numbers, so one can obtain the NIN without necessarily having the card,” he said.
The NIMC boss said that the commission has provided an online authentication system that allows for authenticating the Identity numbers allocated to each person.
He said the commission had over 1000 enrolment centres across the country, noting that it was not enough to capture the population of the country.
“The standard is that for every 50,000 Nigerians, you need a centre to enrol them and we have 200 million people, so at least we needed 4000 centres.
“Because, we have only 1000 centres, that is why we came up with an ecosystem approach so that all other government agencies that are capturing data can do it and send to NIMC to generate NIN for them.
“The NIN is supposed to be your secret number and a social security number, that is why in the design of the card, we make sure that the number is coded inside the card for security reasons and transactions purposes,” he said.