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NIMC extends mandatory use of NIN to January 2016

By on September 4, 2015

The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), the Issuing Authority for National Identification Number (NIN), has extended the date for the commencement of the mandatory use of the National Identification Number (NIN), from September 1, 2015 to January 9, 2016.
The Commission had earlier directed that all transactions involving the identification of individuals as specified in Section 27 of the NIMC Act must be done with the NIN beginning from September 1, 2015.
The extension of the September date follows the recent directive by President Muhammadu Buhari, that all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) should expeditiously harmonise their biometric databases.
Announcing the extension in a statement, the General Manager, Corporate Communications at NIMC, Abdulhamid Umar, said the extension would enable the Commission make further progress in its ongoing efforts on harmonisation with the MDAs, which also extends to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Pension Commission (PenCom), Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, (FMARD), among others.
This will help avoid the situation similar to what was experienced when the CBN wanted to enforce the cut off date for the BVN, leading to a late rush to meet the deadline/massive turn out of citizens and the troubles they had to go through. It will also help ensure that the need for double enrolment is reduced to the barest minimum during this transition period when the harmonization is being implemented, Umar said.
He explained that the management of NIMC had taken into consideration the fact that the CBN had extended by a few months, the deadline for the completion of the Bank Verification Number (BVN) exercise thus extending the time frame for the completion of the harmonization it has begun with the CBN on the BVN programme.
It is expected that with the planned harmonisation, which will effectively link all MDA biometric databases, including INEC, FRSC, PenCom, FIRS/JTB, NHIS, FMARD, among others, the citizens will not be required to have their biometrics taken every time by these institutions in the near future. Also the MDAs will invariably act as valid agents to the NIMC, collecting their own data as well as providing data required for the issuance of the NIN by the NIMC, based on the minimum national standards for biometric and demographic data capture already set by the MDAs, Umar added.
Also NIMC has concluded plans to provide pre-enrollment services on smart phones. This will ensure that citizens can start their enrollment using their smart phones, a development that will ensure that in the next couple of months citizens, of all ages, would have completed their demographic enrollment before they proceed to NIMC Enrollment Centres for their biometric data capture to complete their enrollment.
“Management believes that this will help to decongest the enrollment centres as well as ensure that citizens enroll at their convenience as the cut off date draws nearer,” he said.
Few months ago, NIMC had announced that it would start to enforce the use of the NIN by citizens in the conduct of certain transactions as specified in Section 27 of the NIMC Act, 2007. But the need to complete the initiation of the process of harmonization, to ensure that at least legacy databases of MDAs are linked is an important process that would facilitate citizen’s adoption and participation in the process.
The NIN is an 11 digit number assigned to an individual upon successful enrollment into the National Identity Database (NIDB). It is what represents the unique entry of a person’s personal information in the National Identity Database. Once issued to an individual, that number cannot be used again.