By Moses Akaigwe
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has explained that the introduction of compulsory provision of the National Identification Number (NIN) by applicants for the National Driver’s License (NDL) is in full compliance with the directives of the Federal Government on the harmonisation of citizens’ data.
FRSC Corps Marshal, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi has also made the provision of NIN mandatory for all categories of vehicle registration, effective from the second quarter of 2021.
Disclosing that the development was in compliance with a Presidential directive, the Corps Public Education Officer, Bisi Kazeem, said in a statement that all applicants for vehicle registration are expected to present their National Identification Number as a precondition for the registration of their vehicles.
Kazeem warned that there would be no waiver for anyone irrespective of their status in the society.
The FRSC spokesperson further emphasised that the exercise has become very imperative in view of the critical role a harmonised database on citizens’ information will have on national development in terms of resolving the challenges of identifying individuals to assist security agencies in data collation and speedy retrievals to address critical national security challenges.
Kazeem stated that the Corps Marshal also enjoined members of the public who have not enrolled in the ongoing NIN registration at the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to make haste while the sun shines as the corps would not register any vehicle whose owner is not captured in the NIMC database.
According to the Corps Marshal, “Beginning from the second quarter of this year (2021), if you want to register your vehicle, it is going to be compulsory for you to provide your NIN. This is part of the security checks.
“So once you provide your NIN, it makes the matter easier and helps the government in national planning, critical decision making and also enhance adequate Intelligence gathering for security of lives and properties”.
In another development, the Corps Marshal, has advised fleet operators, other commercial drivers and patronisers of night trips, including private vehicle owners to desist henceforth from it, emphasising that the journeys which are often characterised by poor visibility, fatigue, sleeping on wheels, excessive speed among others, are not only unsafe, but dangerous.
Oyeyemi gave the warning while reacting to some reports of fatal crashes recorded at night at the beginning of the year, which led to the death of several road users and left others with different degrees of injuries.
The Corps Marshal lamented that on January 5, 2021 alone, an avoidable fatal crash occurred in Kabba, Kogi State where two vehicles were caught up in a head-on collision as a result of a combination of some factors revealed to be fatigue and sleeping on the steering.
The crash involved the driver of a white Toyota Hiace bus ( MSA 942 XA) that contravened COVID-19 protocols on physical distancing by overloading the bus with 18 passengers instead of the prescribed eight, and a green Iveco trailer carrying seven passengers.
It was learnt that out of the 25 passengers on board the two vehicles, eight were killed while 17 sustained various injuries.
Similarly, while maintaining that crashes that occur at night are more fatal than the ones that happen in the day time, Oyeyemi also recalled that just on January 9, 2021, two vehicles; a white Sienna and a Sharon bus without a number plate were involved in a fatal crash on Akwanga-Keffi road leaving the entire 17 passengers on board burnt beyond recognition.
Speaking further, he disclosed that intelligence report revealed that most fleet operators and other vehicle owners, including private vehicle owners, who are addicted to night journeys, do so for selfish economic gains.