Nigerian Minister of Communications , Isa Pantami, proposes BVN to be replaced with NIN.
Isa Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, has suggested to the Federal Government to replace the Bank Identification Numbers (BVN) with the National Identification Numbers(NIN).
Not long after a tour of telecoms operators and NIN licensees in Abuja on 8 February, Pantami made this known to newsmen.
In response to the difficulties faced by those with BVN data trying to upgrade with NIN details, Pantami said that
“The problem is that the BVN documents of NIN may not be absolutely the same, however the most important factor is that the NIN is the main identification of every person, even legal immigrants.”
NIN remains the only required number and the primary identifier of our citizens and any other identity is secondary. BVN is a bank policy that has not been defined by statute.
“The 2007 NIMC Act states that all our citizens must be registered and that the law gives them 60 days to register from the time the law was passed and that all permanent residents and legal residents who have to stay here for a minimum of 24 months must be registered for a period of 180 days.
“Today, we discussed with the CBN Governor how to ensure the immediate supply of the NIN to all our people with BVN. We’re working on it, but CBN is responsible for initiating the process to make it even simpler for our people.”
When Patami was asked to explain the role of the government on the substitution of the BVN with NIN, Pantami said.
“I made a presentation to the National Economic Sustainability Committee and I drawn the CBN Governor’s attention to the need to replace BVN with NIN because BVN is a bank policy while NIN is a rule.
Because it has been established by law so the strength of the law wherever you go is not the same with a policy of one institution.
BVN is therefore only available to all who have bank accounts, but NIN is for both inhabitants of the country and legal immigrants. BVN is our secondary database, while NIN and the database are the primary database for each organization to refer to NIMC in the region.”