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National ID: 9.5m Nigerians registered, Diaspora registration begins in September

The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) says it will begin registration of Nigerians in the Diasporas in September for the national identity card in September
The Director-General NIMC, Mr Aliyu Aziz, stated in Abuja when the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, paid him a courtesy visit.
Aziz said that 9.5 million people had so far been registered for the national identity card, captured in NIMC database till date.
He said the Diaspora enrolment, scheduled to begin in September, was part of NIMC’s grand plan to ensure that all Nigerian citizens abroad are registered on the database it was building.
The D-G said that the commission was taking its time to have a database that could be used for identity management which he said was a continuous process.
He said that the commission was also harmonising the existing data bases so that, it could have one single data base all over the country
Aziz assured that the exercise would be done seamlessly like the on-going one in the country.
“Way back in 2012, we started the registration and we are in about 400 locations.
“We build the system in such a way that you can have enrolment station anywhere and could be securely connected to the database here.
“Therefore it will not be a problem to commence enrolment of the Diaspora. We hope that by September this year we would have selected the companies that will carry out this registration,” he said.
He said that the NIMC technology was done in such a way that individual can commence the registration on its own by accessing the website and fill the pre-enrolment form.
The D-G said the person could take the form to any centre and have his or her biometric data captured.
“I want to tell you that we are ready, we are ISO certified; we have the technology. Our card has MasterCard that is certified by MasterCard before we issue.
“So the process is ongoing so by September 2016, we hope to commence the process and we will involve your office in all the process,” he said.
Dabiri- Erewa had earlier expressed concern that there was no accurate database for Nigerians in the Diaspora and that they could not have a database connected to the national identity card.
She said that the one of the objectives of her office was to ensure accurate data of Nigerians in the Diaspora and that NIMC could be of help
“It is a shame that this is 2016 and we still do not have an accurate data base for the Nigerians in Diaspora.
“We are dealing with estimate, sometime we say 15 million sometimes we say 18 million.
“So therefore, we want to know what you are doing about data base of Nigerians in the Diaspora.
“Do you have plans for them; are you planning to also have them registered, we hope such registration would be permanent, and it would not be a temporary one?” she asked.
According to her if we have a data base from NIMC, there would be a data security, data storage, it is going to cost a lot to get it done, but it can be done.
“Basically we know we will have a permanent identity card that Nigerians in the Diaspora can hold, without an accurate data base, we cannot talk about progress,” she said.
The presidential aide stressed the need to put in place concrete steps to ensure that the Diasporas are enrolled accurately.
Dabiri Erewa pledged to work with the commission to ensure successful enrolment of Nigerians living abroad.
She urged the commission to be transparent in the selection of the vendors that would handle the registration of the Diasporas and also get Diasporan’s companies involved in the exercise
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