The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), approved the granting of licenses to 173 private sector agents and 30 state governments / public sector institutions to carry out the registration of Nigerians and legal residents in the Base of National Identity Data (NIDB) on behalf of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).
The Managing Director / Chief Executive of NIMC, Engr. Aliyu Aziz, who revealed this Friday in Abuja that the licensed agents were explained that the approval was made after the agents successfully fulfilled all the conditions in the Expression of Interest (EOI) announced that was carried out in 2019 as a first step towards taking off the National Digital Identity Ecosystem project.
According to him, a breakdown of successful licensees shows that 16 state governments were licensed, including the states of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Gombe, Lagos, Kaduna, Katsina, Kano, Oyo, Ogun, Sokoto and Zamfara.
Licensed public sector institutions include the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the National Pension Commission, the Central Bank of Nigeria (through Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement Systems Plc), the National Population Commission, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Joint Fiscal Board and Nigerian Postal Services.
Other public sector organizations that issued licenses include the Military Pension Board, the Abuja Business Agency, the Corporate Affairs Commission, the National Health Insurance Plan, the National Agricultural Research and Extension Liaison Services, and the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons.
The top mobile network operators in Nigeria, MTN, Airtel, Globacom and 9mobile are among the 173 licensed private sector organizations, while Etranzact, VDT Communications, Unified Payment Services are also among the successful licensees.
Seven NGOs, namely Africa Youth Growth Foundation, An Nadaa Educational Foundation Arrida Relief Foundation, Hadejia Ina Mafita Initiative Community Based Organization Mimido Initiative & Development, and Murna Foundation also obtained licenses.
The head of the NIMC said the licensing of enrollment agents was in line with the Federal Government’s strategy of increasing enrollment and issuance of the National Identification Number (NIN) to Nigerians and legal residents, thus liberalizing the process. registration and opening the sector to multiple players. .
“The goal of the Digital Identity Ecosystem project is to increase the number of enrollment centers in the country from the current average of 1,000 to 10,000 and enrollment figures from the current 43 million to 200 million over the next five years.
“The initiative is one of the cardinal pillars of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS). It is powered by the NIMC working with public and private service providers as partners, including state / local governments, public institutions, civil society organizations and qualified private providers for the enrollment of Nigerians and legal residents of Nigeria in a centralized and secure system. National identity database.
“The initiative is also to support the Federal Government’s effort to deal with insecurity in the country.
“The project aims to eliminate the bottlenecks involved in the registration process. It will also improve the authentication of the identity of citizens and make all identity transactions safe inside and outside the country, ”he added.
According to Aziz, approved agents must begin the enrollment of all Nigerians and legal residents immediately.