By Daniel Edu
President Bola Tinubu of Nigeria has directed the Director-General of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Aliyu Aziz, to take a 90-day pre-retirement leave, leading to his retirement on November 24, 2023. Simultaneously, Tinubu has appointed Bisoye Coker-Adesote as the new Acting Director-General of the agency, with a full term of four years beginning on November 24, 2023.
The National Association of Telecoms Subscribers has welcomed this change, hoping it will bring improvements to the national identity system. NIMC has faced numerous challenges under the outgoing DG’s leadership.
One of the significant challenges has been the handling of the National Identification Number (NIN) registration process, particularly during periods of high demand. The platform’s inability to accommodate the influx of registrations has been a point of contention. It’s hoped that the new acting DG will address these issues.
Despite the challenges, NIMC reported that over 100 million people have enrolled for NINs, which is seen as a testament to the former DG’s efforts. During his tenure, the agency introduced electronic NINs and embraced blockchain technology for identity management.
According to Adedeji Owonibi, Founder of Convexity, the outgoing DG’s tenure witnessed improvements, including decentralizing registration efforts, leading to a significant increase in the number of registrations.
The appointment of a new acting DG is expected to bring fresh perspectives and strategies to address the challenges and bottlenecks in the national identity system.