The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) says lack of funds was hindering commencement of registration of Nigerians in the Diaspora.
The Head, Corporate Communications of NIMC, Mr Loveday Ogbonna, made this known during an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos.
He said that NIMC, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, planned to enrol Nigerians in the Diaspora but were having fund constraints.
According to him, NIMC plans to train and deploy the ministry’s workers to carryout the exercise.
“The registration of Nigerians in the Diaspora has not started.
“The process is ongoing; because of recession, it is not moving as we planned.
”Funding is a challenge, it has been a constraint because funds are not released as and when due.
”Once we have greenlight to that effect, we will be able to start. Infact, if we have the funding today, every other thing will jump-start.
”We are still at the stage of responsibility – NIMC and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – on who to buy the needed equipment and get them to the different locations,” he said.
NAN reports that NIMC has so far enrolled 23.3 million people for National Identification Numbers (NINs).
The number was seven million in November 2015.
The commisssion advised Nigerians and legal residents to present themselves to be enrolled for NIN to avoid rush.
It said that rush might arise with enforcement of the mandatory use of NIN for transactions and access to services as stipulated in Section 27 of the NIMC Act of 2007.
”By law and along the entire lifecycle of individuals in Nigeria, you need to present your NIN whenever you need to be identified for services such as passport issuance.
”You will need to present NIN during banking services, land transactions, insurance services, payment of taxes, voter registration, consumer credits, and all government services.
”Enrol for the NIN, encourage everyone you know to do same, including children and legal residents.
”This is necessary as all other government agencies will follow soon and make their respective announcements on the mandatory use of the NIN,” he said.