By Victor Ajiromanus
Founder of CheckMyPeople Limited, Chudi Obiofuma, said the firm has introduced online community policing to address the absence of background information on prospective domestic employees.
He said the development became necessary following the rising cases of domestic crimes committed by those employed to work in homes.
Consequently, Obiofuma urged Nigerians to carry out background checks before hiring domestic workers for their homes.
This admonition was given at the public unveiling of its Identity Verification Services (IVS).
Obiofuma identified one of the greatest risks households in Nigeria face today as dependence on unknown and unverified persons for domestic services.
He further said getting vital information about prospective employees can save them from from death, physical and psychological injuries.
His words: “The way employers recruit people is usually done verbally, and not based on any data or documentation. People are usually employed through an informal process of referrals, where a family will request the services of a person or agency to search then present candidates for screening and employment, often for a significant finder’s fee plus expenses.”
To address this absence of background information on prospective domestic employees, Obiofuma said CheckMyPeople has introduced the concept of Online Community Policing.
This, he explained is where families come together in an online community to share information about domestic staff that they employ in their homes.
He noted that CheckMyPeople has provided an online database platform that will allow registered users in Nigeria to document their domestic staff as well as record their professional and personal interactions with them.
Obiofuma also disclosed that CheckMyPeople has adopted the National Identification Number (NIN) as the unique identifier on their platform.
According to him: “NIN is critical because It is associated with stringent biometric data collection by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), and uniquely identifies every registered Nigerian. Additionally, it can be verified against the NIMC database to ensure authenticity before it is used on the CheckMyPeople platform.
This service, he stated, is a very crucial step in every employer’s ability to conduct effective due diligence.
Speaking on behalf of Director General of National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Azeez Aliu, the Lagos Regional Director of the commission, Kayode Adegoke, described the initiative of CheckMyPeople as a creative idea and first in Africa.
Adegoke stressed that Nigeria is at the front runner in digital identity system because other African countries including South Africa has come to borrow a leaf from the current digital identity module operating in the country.
Also present at the commissioning was Nosa Mamman-Odey, Acting Zonal Commander, National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), said the agency has collaborated with CheckMyPeople, to bring to the barest minimum, crime especially those done by domestic staff.
She noted also that with the platform, the agency would better tackle the incidence of forced labour, human trafficking and under-aged employees, which is in line with its vision.
Mr Obiofuma further advised employers of domestic staff to always insist that every prospective employee has a National Identification Number (NIN), which will help them do their due diligence.
He urged Nigerians to join the community by registering for free and take advantage of the many benefits to protect their homes and families.