Our land soaked in blood, gloom, South-East Bishops wail

…Says project would address pervasive fragmentation in Nigerian

By Emmanuel Elebeke

The Nigeria Digital ID4D Project Coordinator, Mr. Musa Odole Solomon has called for the enactment of a data protection law and amendment of some other existing laws, such as the NIMC Act for a smooth and harminised national identity ecosystem in the country.

He said the enactment of the legal framework became imperative because addressing the legal and legislative framework is key at this time.

Solomon, spoke at a stakeholder engagement workshop for establishing an inclusive enrolment system and effective feedback mechanism for the ID4D Project held in Abuja.

The Digital ID4D is a Nigerian project, jointly funded by the World Bank. European Investment Bank, and the French Development Agency.

The Project Development Objective is to increase the number of persons with a National Identity Number (NIN), issued by a robust and inclusive foundational Identity system,that facilitates their access to services. By its PDO, it seeks to stimulate demand for IDs, based on access to services.

The project is designed, following an ecosystem model, and not limited to any single organisation. It therefore involves different agencies of the government, the private sector and the civil society.

According to the ID4D Coordinator, the project has made adequate provisions for financing institutional capacity development, aimed at building trust and credibility within the country’s ID ecosystem.

‘‘Since it became effective in December 2021, Nigeria ID4D had sought to address the pervasive fragmentation of the Nigerian identification ecosystem, with no fewer than 13 public institutions providing some form of identification services; inadequate infrastructure of the National Identity Management Commission that poses a risk to the continuous enrolment of people, notably women, youth and persons living with disability.

‘‘The project has also initiated steps towards strengthening the legal framework on identification and data in Nigeria. As the Project Development Objective has mandated the project to create a robust foundational ID system for Nigeria that would involve NIMC and the Civil Registration system under the National Population Commission (NPC), the project had begun engagement with the NPC for areas of support, including digitizing the registration of births and deaths, capacity building and a review of their legal and institutional frameworks.’’

While calling on CSOs to partner with the ID4D towards achieving its objectives, Solomon noted that the project has elaborate plans for the engagement of civil society in Nigeria.

The Coordinator, who described CSOs as the bridge between government and the citizens, said the workshop was organised in recognition of the CSOs as a community of citizens, linked by common interests and collective activity.

Speaking at the workshop, a senior social development specialist with the World Bank, Victoria Korsak said the workshop was about the recognition Nigerian government attached to the project, having made a request for the project. 

‘‘These are the things we want to achieve. We are like technical support technical assistance to the government. We want to achieve this, we can help Nigeria to design the strategy for achieving that goal.

‘‘So we are providing technical support to NIMC, the team that you see here today in the project implementation unit thinking about what’s the best way to do this. What’s the best way to set up an enrollment system that will cover everybody by June 2023.’’

The  project is a $500 million fire funded by three different donors, World Bank European Investment Bank and AFT. French development agency expected to terminate by June 2023.

 Participants at the event comprised of non-state actors in Nigeria.

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