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FG inaugurates committee to establish national digital ID to improve governance

George Akume, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF) George Akume, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF)

The federal government, through the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), has inaugurated a steering committee on the Nigeria digital identification for development ecosystem project.

George Akume, secretary to the government of the federation (OSGF), led the inauguration of the steering committee in Abuja on Tuesday, according to a statement.

Akume said the committee signifies a pivotal step in Nigeria’s commitment to achieving digital transformation and fostering inclusive development across the nation.

“The steering committee is poised to guide the strategic direction of the Nigeria Digital ID4D project,” he said.

“The project’s vision is to establish a secure and verifiable digital identity for every Nigerian, thereby enhancing service delivery, governance, and creating opportunities for growth in the digital economy.”

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Akume also said the project would revolutionise identification and access to services.

He said there is also the need to address challenges related to data privacy, accessibility, and citizen engagement to ensure the project’s success.

“The Nigeria Digital ID4D project holds immense promise in revolutionizing identification and access to services,” he said.

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On her part, Abisoye Coker-Odusote, director-general and chief executive officer (CEO) of NIMC, said the digital identity project is to drive socio-economic development and empower the citizens.

Coker-Odusote also expressed confidence in the scheme’s transformative impact.

“Nigeria Digital Identification for Development Program represents a bold and ambitious initiative aimed at leveraging digital technologies to enhance service delivery, improve governance, and unlock opportunities for our citizens,” she added.

The NIMC boss also appreciated all stakeholders for their unwavering support and commitment to the national endeavour.

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She said the commission looks forward to working closely with the steering committee and all partners to realise the vision of a digitally empowered Nigeria.

“The steering committee’s mandate extends beyond policy formulation to fostering a collaborative governance structure that will oversee the project’s implementation,” Coker-Odusote said.

“The committee is tasked with ensuring that the project aligns with international best practices and respects the privacy and rights of all Nigerians.”

According to the statement, the committee members include the OSGF as chairman; Wale Edun, minister of finance; Atiku Bagudu, minister of budget and national planning; and Bosun Tijani, minister of communications and digital economy.

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Others are Muhammad Ali Pate, minister of health, Tahir Mamman, minister of education, and Coker-Odusote, the secretary, amongst others.

The committee’s inauguration comes days after Nigeria’s identity database managed by NIMC was allegedly breached by a suspicious firm.

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Meanwhile, during ex-President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in 2020, the federal government had also inaugurated a steering committee for this same project.

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