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Nigeria urged to adopt digital addressing system for better social welfare planning

Nigeria urged to adopt digital addressing system for better social welfare planning

A one-time postmaster general and chief executive officer of the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST), Bisi Adegbuyi, insists that a digital addressing system in Nigeria will help the federal government better identify poor citizens who require social welfare assistance.

The official made the recommendation recently during an interview with Punch.

He is quoted as saying that for the federal government to better identify the poor and vulnerable people it wants to take care of, it must ensure that this section of the population is better identified for proper policy formulation and intervention.

According to Adegbuyi, a digital addressing system, which he described as the last mile of the digital ID project the country is implementing, “is so vital for lifting people out of poverty.”

He adds that enrolling a person’s biometric information and linking it to their physical and identifiable address is one of the surest ways of ensuring the integrity of the digital ID system.

The official also notes that the success of such an endeavour would also depend on a strong collaboration between the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) and institutions like the Nigerian Postal Service.

This is not the first time Adegbuyi is stressing the importance of a digital addressing system for Nigeria. In a letter in April, he urged the World Bank to make the use of a digital addressing and ID verification system a pre-condition for the disbursement of  funds for a social support program for vulnerable Nigerians.

The call came as the government was expecting an $800 million palliative loan to enable poor Nigerians cope with the effects of a planned government fuel subsidy removal.

In 2021, the chief commercial officer of OkHi, a smart addressing and ID verification provider, Galen Crawley, also made the case for a digital addressing system in Nigeria as a way of enhancing Know Your Customer (KYC) for customer onboarding operations such as bank account opening.

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