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Nigeria to unveil new national ID Card with payment, social services capabilities: NIMC

AfriGo Domestic Payment Card Scheme

*The National Identity Management Commission  says the Federal Government is set to introduce an innovative identity solution, disclosing only the registered citizens and legal residents with the National Identification Numbers will be eligible to request the new cards

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

The Federal Government of Nigeria, through the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Nigeria Inter-bank Settlement System (NIBSS), has launched an innovative identity solution with payment functionality for all types of social and financial services to be powered by AfriGO, a national domestic card scheme.

The National Identity (ID) Card, layered with verifiable National Identity features, is backed by the NIMC Act No. 23 of 2007, which mandates NIMC to enrol and issue a General Multipurpose Card (GMPC) to Nigerians and legal residents.

Mr. Kayode Adegoke, Head of Corporate Communications at NIMC, in a statement issued Friday, April 5, 2024, disclosed the card would address the demand for physical identification.

NIMC said the new card would also enable 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.

The statement noted that only registered citizens and legal residents with the National Identification Numbers (NINs) would be eligible to request the card.

Adegoke further explained the card, which will be produced according to ICAO standards, is positioned as the country’s default national identity card.

Besides this functionality, the Commission stated that cardholders would also be able to use the cards as Debit or Prepaid Cards by linking same to bank accounts of their choice.

“The card shall enable eligible persons especially those financially excluded from social and financial services have access to multiple government interventions programmes,” stated the Head of Corporate Communications.

NIMC further stated that in line with data protection regulation and public interest, it 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 in the digital ecosystem

The Commission disclosed the key features of the new card will include the following:

  • Machine-readable Zone (MRZ) in conformation with ICAO for e-passport information
  • Identity card Issue Date and document number in line with ICAO standard
  • Additional features include 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

Request 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.

The Commission, therefore, urged Nigerians to visit: nimc.gov.ng for further information.

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