BY BABAJIDE KOMOLAFE
THE Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, yesterday, said that biometric capturing of banks’ customers across the country will commence on February 14. The project is expected to start with the CBN and two branches each from 10 banks go live on the biometric project portal.
The apex bank also said that the Bankers’ Committee is working in collaboration with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) on the integration of the biometric data to be acquired from Bank customers.
Director, Corporate Communications Department, CBN, Mr. Ugochukwu Okoroafor and his counterpart in the Banking and Payment Systems, T.O. Fatokun, said this while fielding questions from journalists in Abuja. The duo dispelled claims that the biometric project, which was a collective decision of the Bankers’ Committee, contradicted directives of the Federal Government on the proliferation of data bases in the country.
Okoroafor said, “The Bankers’ body is working assiduously with the NIMC to integrate both systems for the overall good of the country in her quest to rank among the top economies of the world within the current decade.”
On the allegation that Dermalog, the company to which the biometric capture contract was awarded, is bankrupt, Fatokun reiterated that the German firm was not bankrupt. He explained that the Bank that advised the Committee gave a Due Diligence Report, which did not identify any encumbrance in the financials of the company.
He wondered why such a report could be published on a matter of crucial national importance; even after the reporter had been shown evidence that Dermalog was an active and capable company with proven competence in the relevant area.
He also emphasized that the presence of the German Ambassador to Nigeria, Ms Dorathee Janeteke-Wenzkel at the contract signing ceremony lent credence and weight to the credibility of the company.