An Independent Laboratory and field test conducted on the new smart national identity card has shown that it is in compliance with the security recommendations and standards of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
This was disclosed by the Deputy Director of the National Identity Management Commissionâ€™s (NIMC), Mr. Abdulhamid Umar, when he fielded questions from journalists at the Murtala Murhammed International Airport, Lagos at the weekend.
Mr. Umar explained that the successful testing confirms that the new smart card would be used as a travel document when it is launched and issued to Nigerians, as it has all the security details for individual profiling and identification.
The Deputy Director further explained that the Card Personalisation facilities had passed the User Acceptance Test which was followed closely by the successful testing and validation of the EuroMasterVisa (EMV) compliance testing.
This test, he said, showed that the new National Identity Smart Card can be used at point of sale and ATM machines for transactions currently available on the conventional ATM Cards.
THISDAY gathered from a source close to the Commission that arrangements have been made for the card launch to herald the commencement of the eâ€“ID Card issuance to Nigerians, but the process was slowed down due to lack of funds.
â€œThere are plans to precede the card issuance with a massive awareness campaign but it is being held back by lack of funding. NIMC had called on Banks and Telecom companies to support it so it can scale up enrolment activities which have been hampered by the non-performance of the private sector companies: CHAMS Consortium Limited and OnesecureCard Limited which were given a concession to create enrolment centres,â€ the source said.
In October 2013, the Presidency mandated the Commission to ensure that all eligible persons in Nigeria were enrolled into the national identity card programme and that all agencies of government should switch over to the NIMC infrastructure.
It was gathered that the Commission is seeking corporate sponsors to support its programme because the budget of the commission which had not been fully released in the past two years was cut by 75 per cent.