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FG set to launch new National Identity Cards linked to bank accounts

The Federal government of Nigeria has announced a plan to launch new national identity cards with payment and social service delivery capabilities.

This was revealed in a statement issued by the Head of Corporate Communications of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Kayode Adegoke on Saturday.
Kayode Adegoke said that the “Federal Government of Nigeria, through the NIMC in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigeria Inter-bank Settlement System (NIBSS)”, has launched what he described as an innovative identity solution with payment functionality for all types of social and financial services to be powered by a national domestic card scheme, AfriGO.

He said that “This card will address the demand for physical identification enabling cardholders to prove their identity, access government and private social services, facilitate financial inclusion for disenfranchised Nigerians, empower citizens, as well as encourage increased participation in nation-building.

“Only registered citizens and legal residents with the National Identification Number (NIN) will be eligible to request the card. The card, which will be produced according to ICAO standards, is positioned as the country’s default national identity card.

“In addition to this functionality, cardholders will also be able to use the cards as debit or prepaid cards by linking the same to bank accounts of their choice.”

“In line with data protection regulation and public interest, NIMC remains committed to protecting cardholders’ personal data and will ensure compliance with international standards on data security protocols as security features that protect the confidentiality and safety of users’ information.”

He outlined key features of the new national identity card to include: “Machine-readable Zone (MRZ) in conformation with ICAO for e-passport information.

“Identity card Issue Date and document number in line with ICAO standard.

“Travel, health insurance information, microloans, agriculture, food stamps, transport, and energy subsidies, etc.

“Nigeria’s quick response code (NQR) containing the national identification number.”

“Biometric authentication, such as fingerprint and pictures, as the primary medium for identity verification through the data on the card chip.

“Offline capability that allows transactions in areas with limited network coverage or zero infrastructure connectivity.

“Functionality as a debit and prepaid card catering to both banked and unbanked individuals.”

According to Kayode, “Requests for cards by registered citizens and legal residents will be made available online, at any commercial bank, various agencies or agents participating in multiple programs and/or any NIMC offices nationwide.”

Image via NIMC.

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