.NIMC extends Diaspora enrollment to Togo, Niger, Ireland, Chicago

By Emmanuel Elebeke

Contrary to the belief that the National Identity Number, NIN verification portal of the National Identity Management Commission, NIMC crashed, it was actually the government’s Information and Communications Technology, ICT service provider, Galaxy Backbone, that had the issue which affected all servers hosted on its platform.

The Management in an exclusive chat with Vanguard admitted that the fault was its and apologised to the public for the breakdown of its central Server which has led to the suspension of services by all their customers.

This came as the organization revealed that efforts were on top gear to address the hiccups within the shortest possible time.

The organization said it regretted the temporary outage of some of its services and the inconvenience being experienced by the public, including telecom subscribers and bank customers, saying that the highest priority classification of professional engineers across the organization has been dispatched to fix the glitch.

Head, Corporate Communications, Galaxy backbone, Chidi Okpala, who confirmed this development to Vanguard said the company had put together a highly-skilled technical team of experienced Engineers and Applications experts to not just solve this current issue but put in place all the necessary structures to ensure that such an incident never occurs again in the future.

He noted that while a good number of the services have been restoring efforts are being made to restore all the other services of its customers.

According to him, “in the meantime, we have reached out to all our valued customers and will continue to do so to provide the necessary updates required until all the services affected are completely restored,” he added.

“The Management of Galaxy Backbone Limited (GBB) regrets the temporary outage of some of its services and the inconvenience being experienced by some of its customers across the country.

“Across the organization, the highest priority classification has been assigned and all hands are on deck to ensure resolution is achieved within the shortest possible time.

His admission justified the denial of the Head Corporate Communications of NIMC, Mr Kayode Adegoke who had insisted that the NIMC server was intact.

In a chat with Vanguard Adegoke said the problem of server breakdown as reported in the media does not affect NIMC, rather, a government service provider that embarked on maintenance of its infrastructure, which has affected most government agencies that rely on it for the provision of IT service.

He said to avoid delay in discharge of routine services by all telecom operators and the general public, the NIMC TOKENIZATION platform was made available for the verification of the NIN before rendering services.

Adegoke explained that even though the NIN verification service (NVS) might be down due to maintenance by one of the service providers of its infrastructure, the alternative platform TOKENISATION,    should be explored. He warned the service providers not to bar any subscriber of any service on the guise of NIN not being verified.

The NIMC Spokesman, faulted the position of service providers that they couldn’t carry out necessary operations hinged on NIN verification as a result of the glitch because they were already intimated that the TOKENISATION platform could also give them the verification services.

  His words: “Even though the NIN verification service (NVS) might be down due to maintenance by one of our service providers of its infrastructure, the alternative platform – TOKENISATION is up and running. No one should be barred from any service on the guise of NIN not being verified. 

  “NIMC NVS platform is not the only verification platform available for use, but Tokenisation which protects the identity of NIN holders is also up and running.

  “There is the need to ask questions from the Telcos, NIS, Banks and others on the reason for turning down customers in the guise of NIN not being verified due to the temporary unavailability of the NVS, while the alternative platform- Tokenization is working.”

  “And for accurate information, it is not a NIMC problem; rather, a government service provider has embarked on maintenance of its infrastructure, which has affected most government agencies that rely on it for the provision of IT service. But for us in NIMC, the TOKENIZATION is available for the verification of the NIN before rendering services. 

  “The NIN Verification Service issue has not in any way affected our other operations and services-   Enrollment/issuance of NIN and other services are going on; its only verification of NIN on the NIN Verification Service platform that is affected as stated.

For the past week, the media was awash with the news that  NIMC portal broke down, leading to a halt in the services of banks, telcos, and passport issuance.

  According to the reports, thousands of telecommunication subscribers nationwide seeking to retrieve their lost Subscriber Identity Module cards or acquire new lines temporarily had since been left stranded, following a technical glitch in the National Identity Management Commission portal that has grounded SIM-related services.

Also, the downtime experienced over the weekend made it almost impossible for telecom firms to sell new SIM cards or retrieve lost lines.

Recall that the Federal government through the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC included NIN in the requirements for the acquisition of all new and existing SIM cards, and telecom firms are required to synchronize their SIM registration portals with the NIMC portal in order to verify the details of their subscribers.

Flowing from this development, it became compulsory that before any Service Provider can register a customer, it has to verify their NIN.

Actually, when Vanguard visited MTN, Airtel, GLO and 9Mobile offices in Abuja, subscribers were seen clustering around the premises, lamenting for the delay.

Some of them who spoke on the matter lamented their frustration and pleaded with the relevant authorities to restore the service, so as to save them from further loss.

Vanguard News Nigeria

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