The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Ibrahim Pantami, has explained reasons the enrolment of National Identity Number witnessed resistance, adding that it is one answer to curbing security challenges in the country.
Pantami said without profiling, no nation would be secure, adding that no one would work in any country without National Identification Number (NIN).
The minister made this disclosure in Gombe in a lecture themed, ‘Deployment of emerging technology to enhance the security tertiary institutions in Nigeria’, marking the 6-35th combined convocation (1991/1992 – 2020/2021), of 29 set of graduands at the Federal College of Education (Technical).
He revealed that the country would establish 37 emergency communications centre by 2022 owing to the importance in combating security issues.
Pantami noted that if his policies were fully implemented by relevant agencies, tertiary institutions would be safe, adding that he would not disclose the processes in order not to sabotage the various security interventions.
He also identified artificial intelligence, automation and robotics, cyber security as examples of emerging technologies globally.
Pantami said, “When they are deployed, they will need customisation because in Nigeria, we have our own peculiar challenges; power supply is a challenge. Criminals do not like this and they have been on it day in, day out when I came out with the policy and they wrote petitions against me to stop it.
Some criminals, at least people suspected to be criminals, took the Federal Government to court. Today, it has become part of our lives because you can’t purchase SIM without it. We are glad that JAMB has also accepted it.
“Without profiling, no country will be secure; it can’t be possible because most of us, when we travel to developed nations, we have it. You can’t work in the United States with Social Security Number or in United Kingdom without National Insurance Number.
“In 13 years, we were able to gather only 42 million. From that time to this year, I have increased the data base to more than 67 million. From that time, no single kobo has been released.
“We exist on existing infrastructure; we were able to come up with our innovative solution in which we increased enrolment centres in the country 1,600 to over 6,000 today.”
According to the minister, the main responsibility of leaders at all levels is the security and welfare of their citizens, students.
Also speaking, Isa Salami, Governing Board Chairman of FCE(T), described the topic as relevant following the impact of insecurity across the country.