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NIMC’s Proposed National ID Gets Cold Reception

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Federal government recently announced  plans to launch three new national identity cards in May, targeting 104 million citizens.

NIMC’s Proposed National ID Gets Cold Reception

This initiative is part of a broader effort to establish a unified and secure digital identity framework across the nation.

In an X post on April 6th, the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) disclosed the news with a statement signed by Kayode Adegoke, the body’s corporate communication lead.

Per the official statement, the ID will be powered by AfriGo, a national card scheme created by the country’s apex bank (CBN) to perform domestic transactions such as existing debit cards and the like.

The Nigerian Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) is teaming with the NIMC and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the initiative.

According to benjamindada.com, it is the umpteenth time Nigerians are being introduced to a system of identification.

Since the late 2000s, citizens have been subject to various forms of the same, including national ID cards, bank verification numbers (BVN), and national identification numbers (NIN), each of which has stirred controversy.

Under the newly proposed scheme, Nigerians are getting a bank-enabled national ID, a social intervention card, and an optional ECOWAS National Biometric Identity Card, as disclosed by Ayodele Babalola, technical adviser, Media, and Communications to the Director-General of NIMC.

From the looks of reactions, particularly on social media, the plan is not going down well with Nigerians, most of whom have already been profiled under the country’s existing identification schemes. To some, the system is becoming too complicated and redundant to keep up with due to the hassles that come with it.

“The most interesting thing about all things is that it is never in the masses’ favor but an avenue to loot and create an unnecessary inconvenience for the masses. From NATIONAL ID CARD, BVN, NIN, and now, A new National ID CARD,” @Akewusolaf commented.

In another opinion, @MikaelCBernard said, “This is unnecessary. A simple plastic ID with a QR code to verify is enough. You’re not a fintech, leave credit card issuing alone”.

In 2021 and 2022, the government allocated over N50 billion (≈$38 million) to NIMC to procure “state-of-the-art” equipment for NIN registration.

Regardless of the funding, Nigerians endured to meet the registration deadlines and link their identification numbers with their SIM cards. The country’s telecoms watchdog has at some point blocked un-linked phone lines.

Idris Abubakar, a Nigerian tech journalist pointed to more than 14 years of the government’s attempt at the same idea.

“They have failed each time. Under a new Minister of Interior, an individual with a controversial track record, it’s clear that the NIMC will push ahead with the same idea. Contracts will go out, but no work will be done,” he said.

Isa Pantami, then minister of Communication and Digital Economy, had come under fire due to the NIN’s ineffectiveness when it comes to addressing rising insurgency and kidnapping.

There is no indication how the new system will make up for the former’s shortcomings.

The 2024 Digital Identity Fraud in Africa Report by Africa’s leading identity verification startup, Smile ID, revealed that the Nigerian National Identity document is one of the most vulnerable in the continent, coming in 9th place overall.

Credit: benjamindada.com,


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NDPC Empowers Institute to Certify Data Protection Professionals

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Nigeria Data Protection Commission (NDPC) has said the certification of data protection professionals in the country will significantly reduce capital flight and create more than 500,000 jobs in the sector.

NDPC Empowers Institute to Certify Data Protection Professionals

L-r: Dr. Vincent Olatunji, executive commissioner, NDPC and Dr. Oyedokun Oyewole, president of the Institute of Information Management,

Dr. Vincent Olatunji, executive commissioner, NDPC, stated this at the presentation of the certificate of licence to the Institute of Information Management (IMF) in Abuja.

He said the certification of data protection professionals would not only enhance the protection of personal data, but also boost the country’s economic growth and development.

The projection comes as the commission intensifies efforts to promote data protection and privacy in Nigeria’s rapidly growing digital economy.

According to Dr. Olatunji, the move aims to enhance the capacity of organisations to protect personal data and promote compliance with Nigeria’s data protection regulations.

Establishing a local institution to train and certify Nigerians would significantly enhance local content in the sector, the NDPC boss hinted.

The commission, he assured his audience, was already exploring the possibility of implementing the licencing framework across Africa—a move that could potentially harmonise data protection standards and expertise across the continent.

Dr. Oyedokun Oyewole, president of the Institute of Information Management, said the licence would effectively address the existing gap in the data protection ecosystem, providing a much-needed solution.

Recalling that the certification process began in 2021, Dr. Oyewole reaffirmed the institute’s dedication to excellence, pledging to provide top-notch education in data protection and set a benchmark for the country’s education system in this field.

The IIM’s certification programmes will cover essential topics such as data protection principles, risk management, and compliance with the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR).

The initiative is expected to boost the confidence of organisations and individuals in the country’s data protection landscape.

 

 


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CrediCorp Partners FintechNGR to Drive Consumer Credit Initiative

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Nigerian Consumer Credit Corporation (CrediCorp), has partnered Fintech Association of Nigeria (FinTechNGR) to drive consumer credit scheme initiative through a robust payment platform that would be provided by members of FinTechNGR.

Speaking at a Social Meet in Lagos, organised by FinTechNGR, with the theme: “Augmenting the Future, AI, Credit and Transformation of Nigerian Finance,” the Chairman, CrediCorp Board of Directors, Aderemi Abdul-Bojela, said members of FinTechNGR would have specific roles to play in the partnership, in the areas of providing robust platform for money transfer, technology evaluation, among others.

“Today, CrediCorp is engaging with members of FinTechNGR in a social interactive gathering to discuss collaboration and support for the growth of Consumer Credit Corporation in Nigeria. We want to interact to understand how technology will drive the crediCorp initiative in Nigeria and also to understand the role that members of FinTechNGR will play in all of these initiatives around CrediCorp,” Abdul-Bojela said.

Describing the partnership as a welcome development that will enhance savings culture among Nigerians, the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of FinTechNGR, Dr. Babatunde Obrimah, said: “FinTechNGR is an enabler of technology advancement in Nigeria. We bring the players together to drive technology innovation.

“Our role in the FinTechNGR-CrediCorp partnership is to ensure that our members support the growth of consumer credit in Nigeria, by providing the relevant payment platforms for all financial transactions among the banks who are the lenders, the customers who are the burrowers and the CrediCorp who is the guarantor.”

Speaking about the benefits for Nigerians, Obrimah said the Consumer Credit Corporation in Nigeria would enhance the country’s credit culture and enable Nigerians to save and plan well with their savings. “The initiative will address inflation, help in liquidity flow, build trust in customers’ borrowing, boost credit culture and enhance the culture of savings among Nigerians,” Obrimah said.

Addressing the issue of risk and consumer trust, Abdul-Bojela said the CrediCorp has put measures in place to ensure that the banks that would be involved in lending, would be protected and guaranteed of the repayment of the loans within the CrediCorp ecosystem.

He said there would be an independent management that would ensure that the right technology is put in place to recover all monies.


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NITDA to Integrate of Digital Literacy into School Curriculum

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Kashifu Abdullahi, director general of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), announced plans to integrate digital literacy into Nigeria’s education system, to achieve a 70% literacy rate by 2027 and 95% by 2030.

NITDA to Integrate of Digital Literacy into School Curriculum

Kashifu Abdullah, DG, NITDA

The NITDA’s DG made the announcement on Wednesday in Abuja during a media parley.

He stated that in order to include digital literacy in the curriculum at all educational levels, from kindergarten to university, the Agency was collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Education.

Abdullahi, said that this program would equip Nigerians with the digital know-how and abilities they need to succeed in the digital economy.

He emphasized that NITDA would also launch the “Digital Literacy for All Initiative” to educate Nigerians outside the formal education system and provide access to quality digital content.

Nigeria would train over two million young people in in-demand IT skills in order to become significant global outsourcing hub

NITDA is also collaborating with the Defence Headquarters and security agencies to develop digital solutions to address security concerns, including the use of drones, artificial intelligence, and other digital resources to combat banditry, abduction, and terrorism, he said.

 

According to him, the agency’s draft SRAP 2.0 plan aims to establish Nigeria as a digitally empowered nation, with a focus on innovation, national prosperity, and inclusivity.

The director general of NITDA added that, if successfully implemented, this strategy could propel Nigeria into a new phase of digital empowerment and leadership in the global digital economy.


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