Web of connected players could complicate Cameroon’s biometric ID card tender: report
Augentic seems like a natural contender for the biometric ID card tender launched by Cameroon’s government last year, given its role in issuing the country’s new passports. Any bid from the company could be complicated, however, by its relationship with two other companies that provide technology for ID documents, Africa Intelligence reports.
A bid by Germany-based Augentic for the biometric ID card contract was made in partnership with IN Groupe, which is under review by the French Anti-Corruption Agency (AFA). Industry publication Printing notes that the investigation began in January, citing a report from Le Figaro, but no specific information about what part of the company’s operations are under investigation is available.
IN Groupe also recently won the contract for France’s national digital ID, and for biometrics passports in the Seychelles.
Africa Intelligence suggests that a consultant who played a part in bringing Augentic and IN Groupe’s bid forward in Cameroon is a special consultant to an elite unit within Cameroonian army and involved with procurement. The report also notes that the consultant denies the specific role it alleges, but goes on to claim that he previously worked with Germany’s Veridos in the country. Veridos has also supplied biometric technology for Cameroon’s electoral system.
The General Delegation for National Security (DGSN) launched the tender last September, with a dozen biometrics providers involved in different bids, including Veridos, which many members of Augentic’s leadership team formerly served as executives.
Now, Africa Intelligence reports that Veridos has been complaining about Augentic’s practices in Cameroon to the German embassy.