The Director-General, National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Mr. Aliyu Aziz, said about 42 million Nigerians have been enrolled into the National Identity Database (NIDB) and now have their National Identity Number (NIN).
The NIN is a set of unique 11-numbers issued to individuals/citizens who have registered with the NIMC. The NIMC captures the digital identity of all citizens and issued them the NIN as their unique digital identity.
The NIN is issued in a slip which is free. The slip is a lawful means of identification for Nigerians. But the unique number is paramount and at all times, suffices for identification.
Aziz was speaking this week in Abuja at an interactive session with the media to commemorate the 2020 National Identity Day. The theme of the 2020 celebration was “Identity for Health, Sustainable Development and Growth”.
ID project is part of $430m projects portfolio to empower citizens
Nigeria’s digital identity goal is being reinforced by the World Bank, which is funding the Nigeria Digital Identity for Development Project with about US $115 million as part of a portfolio of six projects in all totaling US $430 million targeting to empower the country’s citizens, especially marginalised groups, to allow them access welfare-enhancing services.
According to a World Bank statement, the project “will enable people in Nigeria, especially marginalised groups, to access welfare-enhancing services. The project will also enhance the ID system’s legal and technical safeguards to protect personal data and privacy.
“This is financed through an International Development Association (IDA) credit of US$115 million and co-financing of US$100 million from the French Agency for Development and US$215 million from the European Investment Bank.”
The NIMC currently has 1,000 enrollment centres and urgently requires additional 4,000 enrollment centres to effectively speed up the enrollment process, Aziz said explaining that the NIDB is a strategic resource both for economic development and national security.
His words: “Nigeria has been positioned to take giant steps in providing unique identity to all through collaboration with government institutions and viable partnership with the private sectors. In a similar manner, our nation’s ID goals can be fully realised when we leverage the adoption and use of digital identity to improve governance, enhance social accountability, promote security and provide basic services to the people”.
NIMC and World Bank funded $115m Digital Identity Project
The NIMC is the anchor vehicle for the Nigeria Digital Identity for Development Project. Already, the Nigerian government has inaugurated a Steering Committee for the project, chaired by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha.
The Nigeria Digital Identification for Development Project is a Word Bank (WB) funded project and has four components – all targeting to: (i) strengthen the existing legal and institutional framework; (ii) establish a robust and inclusive foundational ID system; (iii) enable access to services through IDs; and lastly, (iv) project management and stakeholder engagement.
The ID project is backed by a US $115 million IDA credit. The International Development Association (IDA) is the part of the World Bank that helps the world’s poorest countries. The credit has a grace period of five years with an expected maturity period of 30 years
According to the World Bank, the objective of the project is to increase the number of persons with a national identification (ID) number, issued by a robust and inclusive foundational ID system that facilitates their access to services.