Fresh reason on why the ongoing National Identity Management Commission’s (NIMC) drive to printout digital Identity Cards for millions of Nigerians who had registered since 2013 to date has continued to remain hopeless.
Investigations by Business Hilights revealed high level logistics confusion between the Commission and the framework of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement designed for the production and distribution of the electronic identity cards (e-IDs)
Though the agency is blaming weak PPP arrangement, findings show that it has not been able to do well in managing the backend which include printing and distribution, even the front end such as enrolment of citizens and card personalization have been going on along the streets.
Nigerians who had registered are usually given a printout they will use to exchange for the digital card which had remained elusive for more than four years.
Further investigations, however showed that only citizens who enrolled as far back as 2012 are currently getting their cards while those from 2013 to date have no hope in the near future because of the apparent confusion between the Commission and partners.
A source in the Commission said in an interview that “Now we are trying to clear the backlog as all 2012 cards are ready, 2013 and 2014 will hopefully be out before end of the year”.
“Recall that NIMC was supposed to be a PPP arrangement where the NIMC only manages the backend leaving the front end (enrolment of citizens and card personalisation, etc) to the private sector but that marriage failed leaving NIMC with no option than to start getting into these areas which was not budgeted for,” the source said.
According to the official, NIMC do not have the capacity to print volumes as it can only print a particular quantity per day.
The source opened up further, saying, “We are discussing with the private sectors to come into the card personalisation efforts and assist to get these cards out faster to Nigerians”.
“The harmonization effort is paying off seriously particularly with the BVN and NCC. We collect data from them in batches, clean them up to meet our requirement and issue NIN to the individual but he/she will still be required to personally come to our office to complete the process as some of the field required by us are not usually contained in those data. So once you have your BVN, you are contacted to come for your NIN and just provide additional info to complete the process.
“The BVN data from banks have started arriving at NIMC, same as SIM registration data from NCC and others. Some agencies and banks are now connected live to NIN verification portal and are accepting the NIN as a choice means of identity validation. The CBN has directed all banks to commence the use of the NIN.
Many Nigerians who had registered over the years who spoke to our correspondent expressed worry and loss of confidence on the Commission, saying the delay in getting the card had made nonsense of the meaning of the card.