Mr Aliyu Aziz, Director-General, National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) says so far the commission had registered 21.6 million Nigerians, while hoping to double this number before the end of 2017.
Aziz revealed this when he featured on the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) forum in Abuja on Sunday.
He said that the commission would have covered the country in the next five year.
He said that the commission was aware of the complaints by Nigerians, who had registered over 4 years ago, and promised that in no distance time the cards would be ready.
“The journey so far I can say has been ups and downs but for the past 10 years at a time that NIMC was set up there was this clamour for Public Private Partnership.
“And therefore at that time government handed over the funding activities to the private sector.
“We spent like three years to draw up the partnership agreement but unfortunately it did not work and like the World Bank says that Public Private Partnership don’t really work in Africa.
“And therefore governments have to take over and then start the fresh enrolment.
“Why, because any security document that you have, that have spent more than five years is bound to be counterfeited by the underground work unless you move into the chip base card whereby you can then change the security electronically.
He said that the challenges of the scheme gave rise to the establishment of enrolment centres in every state of the federation to ease the registration processes.
He added that the commission has about 809 centres across the country to ease the process of getting the cards for Nigerians.
“We commenced enrolment in 2012 and we have been enrolling and issuing first of all a transaction ID that is in case that we are unable to issue you with the national identification number then you can come back later on.
“So far we give the national identification number instantly and it is a plus and we commenced 2012 and by 2014 when we launch the card then there is upsurge in the enrolment exercise.
“And all this is being done by government and we are in all the states. We are not in all the local governments but we have enrolment centres about 809 enrolment centres nationwide.’’