National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has said that it cannot produce the national ID cards for all Nigerians who have enrolled in it. Director-General NIMC Aliyu Aziz noted this in Abuja on Monday, adding that the national identity cards that are ready are for those who registered in 2012 and 2013. According to him, “The card that we have now is the best in the whole world, but it is difficult to really produce it for everyone.
“In the NIMC, the focus is first come, first served, and this is for those who enrolled in 2012 and 2013, as they are the ones who have got their cards.
“The focus is actually on the National Identification Number. Your NIN gives you your identity and not the card.
“Historically, we focused ourselves on the card to be the output of what we do; but when the country went into recession, we stepped back and checked and found out that in the United States, it is the Social Security Number that connects all the other agencies.
“In the United Kingdom, it is the National Insurance Number; and in India where recently they enrolled about 1.4 billion people, they only gave the number. This means you can now pull your own NIN and then print it the way you want it.
“Recently in Nigeria, we did the Bank Verification Number; and again, what you get is a number and not a BVN card. However, this does not mean that we won’t give out cards, because it is there in the law that we should issue a general multipurpose card that is secure.
“We want to ask the vendors to print, for we have like five vendors in Lagos that can print these cards. So, we want to get the funding to print the cards by outsourcing it to the vendors.
“Right now, we are focused on enrolling people and harmonising their identities, which is why the number grew from five million to 30 million in our record. But on the ID cards, we have not done much,” he added.