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The federal government has stated arrangements are ongoing to replace the Bank Verification Numbers (BVN) with the National Identity Numbers (NIN).
The Nation reports that Isa Pantami, the minister of communications and digital economy, who made this known shortly after a tour of telecoms operators and NINlicensees in Abuja, said President Muhammadu Buhari has been briefed on the on-going NIN registrations.
It was gathered that the minister said the president was happy with the conduct of the exercise so far, adding that he had also briefed the National Economic Sustainability Committee headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on the imperative of replacing BVN with NIN.
He argued that while BVN was only for accounts holders with various banks, the NINs are for all Nigerians irrespective of their status.
The minister also visited the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) registration centre in Gwarinpa, the zonal headquarters of MTN, Glo Mobile and Airtel in Maitama as well as a Private operator, OMNL, Nigeria.
He was accompanied by the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof Garba Danbatta; director-general of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa and Chief Executive Officer of NIMC, Engr Aliyu Aziz.
Pantami noted that he was impressed by the strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols at all the registration centres.
“The challenge is that the BVN records may not be 100 percent the same with NIN but what is most important is that the NIN is the primary identity of each and every citizen, including legal residents.
“BVN is a policy of a bank and has not been established by law, NIN is the only mandatory number and the primary identification of our citizens and every other identification is secondary.”