Muhammadu Buhari, President of Nigeria, has established a committee to focus on introducing digital identification for all residents. 

Nairametrics reports the goal of the committee is to integrate government information such as BVN, driver’s licenses, passports and the National Identity Management Number.

BVN – Bank Verification Number – is a biometric identification system implemented by the Central Bank of Nigeria to curb or reduce illegal banking transactions in the country.

Nigerian publication The Guardian reports the digital identity project has been in the making for nearly a decade, and despite significant funding, there is still a small success rate.

The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has only issued 41 million National Identification Numbers (NIN), while the country’s total population exceeds 200 million.

According to Biometric Update, more than 100 million Nigerians aged 16 and over have no official identity and come from poor, marginalised communities.

NIMC says only 38% of Nigerians have some form of ID, while 61% are below the poverty line.

Biometric Update reports inclusive and trusted ID systems can improve transparency, grow the economy and help people access services.

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