Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The Federal Government has signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the production of N14.7 billion single biometric identity cards for Nigerians travelling within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
Speaking during the event to sign the MoU with the service provider, Euphoria Press Limited, in Abuja, yesterday Minister of Interior, Lt. Gen Abdulrahman Bello Dambazau (retd), revealed that the project, which will cost N14.7 billion to execute, will have the same colour in all member states, especially detailed information of the holder, including a photograph.
He maintained that there is need for Nigeria to show Africa, and the world, that the nation is serious in providing integration services in West Africa.
The minister said the signing could not have come at the right time, as the ministry recently signed another MoU with Interpol; for security within Nigerian borders, even as he revealed that the ministry is saddled with the responsibility of issuing the ID cards.
He said: “The ECOWAS Biometric ID Card is meant to complement the effort of the present administration in enhancing integration in the sub region.
“It is meant to replace ECOWAS Traveller Certificate.
“Incidentally, we just signed an agreement with Interpol for security partnership within our borders, so the ID card is meant to complement this effort.”