Reps to investigate NIMC over delay in issuing identity card to Nigerians

Elizabeth AtimeFebruary 7, 20243 min

NIMC seems to have delayed the issuance of identity cards to Nigerians despite the government’s huge resources invested in the commission.

The House of Representatives has mandated the Committee on Population and Anti-Corruption to invite the Hon. Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy and the Director-General of the National Identity Card Management Commission (NIMC) to ascertain the delay on the release of National Identity Cards from 2012 to date.

This resolution was sequel to a motion titled, ‘’Need to Investigate the National Identity Cards released from 2012 to date” presented by Rep. Muhammed Dan Abba Shehu (PDP, Bauchi).

The lawmaker noted that the NIMC, as established by law, is charged with the responsibility of collecting, managing, and controlling citizen data for effective economic planning and developmental growth, but the reverse is the case in Nigeria.

He added that in 2015, the NIMC and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) agreed to immediately implement the Presidential directive on harmonization and integration of Biometric Data capture by government parastatals. The directive aimed to improve biometric data collection and storage across government agencies, collaborating with NIMC and INEC for efficient voter registration and enhanced identity management.

Rep. Shehu in his explanation submitted that “Nigerians have shown resilience in assisting the government in obtaining accurate database information through the National Identity Card Management Commission, despite the government’s huge resources for speeding up the process and enhancing electoral transparency and accountability in 2015 and subsequent elections.

Worried that the Commission’s headquarters and its states counterparts have been found to be ineffective in delivering the national assignment to the people, particularly in releasing the National identity cards, due to government neglect of operational activities and directives for the benefit of all Nigerians.

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“Concerned that despite the availability of resources for rapid production and electoral transparency, Nigerians continue to encounter obstacles to updating the National Identity Card Management Commission’s (NIMC) database information due to lack of attention from the government and ineffective service delivery.”

The lawmaker also stated that the Commission received annual budgetary allocations in 2017, 2018, and 2019 to fulfill its mandate, but efforts to produce and release national identity cards have been unsuccessful requiring urgent intervention and attention of the Federal government.

The government intervention in restructuring the Commission is necessary for effective service delivery, revitalizing the Commission’s operations and re-affirming the goal to provide accurate data and identification documents to the citizens thus restoring the confidence of the Nigerian populace.”

The motion was unanimously adopted as the presiding officer, Speaker Tanjudeen Abbas (APC, Kaduna) asked the relevant Committee to tender the report on the motion within four (4) weeks for further legislative action.

Elizabeth Atime

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