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Digital ID enrollment efforts scale up in Kuwait, Nigeria

Digital ID enrollment efforts scale up in Kuwait, Nigeria

Nigeria’s National Identity Management Authority (NIMC) says it is intensifying efforts to get many more citizens and legal residents in the country enroll their biometrics for the National Identification Number (NIN) as issuance figures keep growing by the day.

The pledge comes after statistics from the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reveal that the number of NINs issued climbed by 400 percent within a period of one year, reports Business Day. The number of new NINs rose from five million in 2020 to 27 in 2021, per the NBS.

Similar efforts are swirling up in Kuwait as the country says the number of citizens enrolling their fingerprints as part of a national ID scheme is also increasing, with over 500k enrollments in just weeks.

Last month, the NIMC celebrated the 100 million-mark for NIN issuance as Digital Economy Minister Isa Ali Ibrahim was showered with accolades for his efforts in enabling the ID-issuing authority attain that milestone.

The upswing in NIN issuance has been attributed to many factors including a directive by the federal government in 2020 to have NINs linked to SIM cards. This led to many Nigerians rushing for the NIN in order to avoid being shut out of telecommunication services as the government threatened.

Efforts to ratchet up NIN issuance are in line with the federal government’s objectives of meeting a World Bank target of reaching 148 million enrollments by the first half of next year. The Bretton Woods institution is co-funding Nigeria’s digital ID for development project.

President Bola Tinubu recently signed into law the personal data protection bill, and may observers believe this is likely to boost interest in obtaining the NIN.

Over 500k Kuwaitis enroll in biometrics ID drive

Plans by the Kuwaiti government to identity all citizens and legal residents by capturing their fingerprint biometrics are also advancing rapidly, with nearly 530,000 people already enrolled, per Arab Times.

Accruing to authorities, measures are being taken to ensure that many more enrollment centers are opened. The Interior Ministry is said to be working to open five more registration centers in busy commercial areas to enable more people show up for enrollment without any prior appointment.

For the other centers however, registration is done by appointments, the report notes.

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