House Of Reps Wants Biometric Data Of Nigerians Harmonised
Nigerians have filled forms at telecommunications companies' offices while registering SIM cards; at banks for Bank Verification Number (BVN); they also filled forms for National Identity card and voter cards.
The duplication at a time got so many people frustrated, but one form could have taken care of all these trouble.
Most of these agencies work for the same federal authority.
The need to harmonise the biometric data of Nigerians was discussed during plenary at the House of Representatives on Thursday.
A motion on the issue moved by Ochiglegor Idagbo enjoyed a unanimous adoption.
Moving the motion, Idagbo said the harmonisation would help save Nigeria 40 billion Naira.
The lawmaker recalled that the initiative of National Identity Scheme in Nigeria was first conceived in 1977.
He said the scheme was eventually executed 25 years later in view of the importance of biometric data in planning and development of the economy.
According to him, several countries like the U.S., Canada, South Africa and United Arab Emirates have achieved great outcomes in economic development, using such data.
Much has been achieved in crime detection and prevention as a result of the data bank.
Idaebo said the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Federal Road Safety Commission and the Federal Inland Revenue Service, have separately initiated their own biometric data gathering.
The National Pension Commission, the Independent National Electoral Commission, the National Health Insurance Scheme, the National Population Commission, Telecom Service Providers and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development have collated similar copies of these data.
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"Harmonisation of biometric databases of the agencies of government and private entities will help in saving about 40 billion Naira in operational costs.
"Citizens will not be required to have their biometrics taken over and over again by different agencies working for the same government," he said.
In his ruling, Speaker Yakubu Dogara mandated the Committees on Population and Governmental Affairs to ensure implementation and report back in six weeks.