The number of the National Identification Number (NIN) issued to Nigerians by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) in Nigeria is some 1.29 million away from hitting the 100 million mark.
The latest data from NIMC, as of April 28, showed that 98.7 million identification numbers have been issued to Nigerians. Specifically, 56 million men, about 56.7 per cent have received NINs, while 43.3 per cent of women, about 42.7 million have identification numbers.
The highest cumulative enrolment figure of over 10.8 million was recorded in Lagos State.
This is even as regional figures indicated an almost equal distribution across the North and South.
According to NIMC, top 10 states as led by Lagos showed that 5.9 million men have been handed NINs, while 4.9 million women have identities.
Kano is next with 4.9 million men and 3.6 million women, totaling 8.6 million issued NINs. In Kaduna, 2.6 million women have it, while men account for 3.3 million, which summed up to six million. Ogun boasts of 4.1 million NINs, with women having 1.9 million and men, 2.2 million. Oyo has 3.8 million issued NINs, where 1.8 million women and two million men make up the numbers.
For the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, NIMC has issued 3.3 million NINs with men having 1.9 million and women 1.4 million. Katsina is next with men having two million NINs and women 1.3 million, totaling 3.37 million identification numbers. In Rivers, where NIMC has issued 2.96 million NINs, men have 1.6 million, while the female folks have 1.3 million identity numbers. Bauchi is ninth with 2.6 million issued NINs.
The women have 953,601 identification numbers, while men claim 1.7 million. In number 10 is Delta, with men having 1.3 million, while women boast of 1.2 million, totaling 2.63 million issued NINs.
According to NIMC, the bottom 10 states are Kogi with 1.68 million NINs; Akwa Ibom 1.62 million; Imo 1.66 million; Enugu 1.58 million; Yobe 1.5 million; Taraba 1.43 million.
Others are Cross River 1.12 million; Ekiti 998,685; Ebonyi 789,056 and Bayelsa 623,902 identification numbers.
NIMC, which started charging for NIN verification for each Nigerian passport application since April 1, this year, puts Diaspora issued NINs at 409,408, where men have 238,027 and women 171,381.
NIMC had stated that it agreed on a framework with the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) to improve the quality of service, accuracy, and speed of passport services through the timely verification of NIN.
NIMC Head, Corporate Communications, Kayode Adegoke, had stated that the new arrangement was in furtherance of the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy’s directive to streamline passport application, renewal, and issuance processes.
“Consequently, a NIN Verification fee would be charged for each Nigerian passport application for this service.”
According to him, in Nigeria, the applicable NIN verification fee would be N1, 000; African countries $5 (or its equivalent in other currencies) and other countries would be $15 (or its equivalent in other countries).
Indeed, the harmonisation of the disparate data in the country is fast centred on the acquisition of the NIN as virtually all segments of the economy and public sector require one to present his or her identification number before anything can be done.
For instance, NIN has become compulsory for students, who want to write the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB).
The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) had since 2022, made NIN mandatory for registration of school certificate examination, thus accentuating the importance of the NIN for fishing out ghost candidates and ensuring only genuine candidates sit for the examination. The situation is not different also in the procurement of drivers’ licenses at the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC).
FRSC had stated, “All drivers’ licence applicants are therefore expected to present their National Identification Number before they can be attended to, adding that there would be no waiver for anyone.”
In the telecoms sector, subscribers cannot procure new Subscribers Identity Module (SIM) cards at any telecoms outlet without presenting the NIN. The same at the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), there is a need to provide an identity number.
NIMC had in a document, titled: ‘Harmonisation and Integration Policy,’ said the strategic approach towards the achievement of the harmonisation objectives remains the effective and seamless integration and harmonisation of existing databases, processes and procedures, and infrastructure into a single identity management system and infrastructure, including the provision of an authentication and verification service across the public and private.
Jumpstarting the harmonisation scheme, NIMC identified key partners from the public sector to include the Independent National Electoral Commission – Voters Register; National Health Insurance Scheme – Health Insurance Owners; National Population Commission – Census, Birth/Death Registry; National Pension Commission – National Data Bank; Nigeria Immigration Service – International Passports; Federal Road Safety Commission – Drivers Licenses; Federal Inland Revenue Service – Tax Payers Database (UTIN); Department of National Civic Registration – National Identity Cards; Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) –SIM Card Register; the Nigerian Police Force (NPF); Nigerian Prison Services (NPS).
Others are the Joint Tax Board (JTB); Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC); Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC); Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN); State Security Services and Office of the National Security Adviser. – Guardian.