By Newsie Events Media
The Consulate-General of Nigeria in New York, United States of America has urged Nigerians living in the U.S to register for the National Identification Number (NIN).
The Federal government, through its Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy had embarked on the exercise to create a database for Nigerians. The NIN is issued by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) upon enrolment into the National Identity Database and is used to capture an individual’s records.
According to the Consul-General, Ambassador Lot Egopija, who in a town hall meeting with Nigerian residents in New York, said that the directive to register for NIN came from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
He said the exercise will kick off as soon as the Consulate concludes arrangements with the NIMC.
The New York Consulate is one of Nigeria’s four diplomatic representations in the U.S., and Egopija said everyone within its jurisdiction will be enrolled into the database.
There’s been a surge in the number of Nigerians registering for their NIN since the government announced in December 2020 that any mobile phone subscriber without a NIN will have their SIM cards blocked in a matter of weeks.
The deadline has since been moved six different times, with the latest one scheduled for October 21.
The extension was done to accommodate registration of foreigners, diplomatic missions, Nigerians in diaspora, and Nigerian residents in hard-to-reach remote areas.
Meanwhile, the exercise has also been tainted by controversy after the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami’s past comments were he sympathised with terrorist and terrorist groups are exposed.
Isa Pantami has been the major influence behind the latest push to enroll Nigerians in the database, an exercise he said will help Nigeria fight insecurity better.
There were widespread calls for him to resign after his past comments on terrorism, which has jeopardized the trust in his office and what he can possibly do with data of millions of Nigerians, however, he resisted it.
There have been a total of 59.8 million unique NIN enrolments, with over 5,500 enrolment systems within and outside the country.
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