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We’ve issued identity numbers to 41 million Nigerians- NIMC

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We’ve issued identity numbers to 41 million Nigerians- NIMC

The National Identity Management Commission says it has enrolled and issued 41 million Nigerians with National Identity Number as of today.

The Director-General of the NIMC, Aliyu Aziz, in an interview with journalists, said enrolment was ongoing for Nigerians in the Diaspora in 15 other countries.

Aziz said the NIN has been approved by the Federal Government as the only valid means of identification for government services by law and is a requirement for the application for a new and renewal of an expired Nigerian passport, among others.

Speaking on the challenges regarding the rate of enrolment, he said inadequate electricity, Information Technology infrastructure, inadequate enrolment centres and devices and insufficient sensitisation and awareness of the public, among others, still persisted.

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According to him, the challenges are being addressed in collaboration with all the relevant stakeholders, government and with the help of the media.

“As of today, we have reached record 41 million by sheer determination and hard work. I owe all of this to the great staff of the NIMC who pushed themselves beyond their limits to see this happen,” he said.

“Diaspora enrolment was greatly received by the Nigerians in other countries and it has been going well since the launch. Enrolment is happening in over 15 countries across the world, with more countries to come on board in the near future.”

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He said the plans to implement the strategic road map for accelerating digital identity in the country in June 2020 had been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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According to him, the project will either begin in September or December this year.

Aziz said the $433m it secured from the World Bank, Agence Francaise de Development and the European Union would be used for the expansion of enrolment centres to 4,000.

“The funding covers digital ID enrolment, issuance and usage; strengthening of the enabling law, security, privacy, data protection and cybersecurity mechanisms; as well as strengthening the IT and other backend infrastructure,” the NIMC boss stated.

He added, “There is still a need for funding on the card aspect of the programme as well as on the other regulatory functions of the commission. We are consulting with the Federal Government on these aspects.”

Aziz stressed that the commission was working on strategies to scale up card production and issuance in partnership with the private sector.

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However, he said NIN was sufficient to prove or assert the identity of Nigerians anytime, anywhere.

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UPDATE: Hushpuppi denied bail, to remain in prison

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HushPuppy

Suspected Nigerian fraudster and Instagram celebrity, Hushpuppi has been denied bail in the United States where he was extradited to on charges of cyber fraud.

Ramon Abbas bail application failed in spite of his lawyer, Gal Pissetzky insisting that his job as an Instagram celebrity paid for the $10,000 monthly rent on his luxury Dubai flat.

His lawyer, Gal Pissetzky, had applied for bail and requested that he is given an ankle monitor while he lives with the uncle of a woman he has a baby with, but US prosecutors opposed the bail application.

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US prosecutors said that he poses a flight risk and could commit a crime with just a smartphone and an internet connection.

On reaction, Pissetzky stated that Hushpuppi has much to lose if he flees after bail, he told a judge in Chicago by videolink;

“He is loved and respected. He is a celebrity.

“I don’t see the reason why he would want to ruin his credibility in the world and his status rather than stay here and face this allegation.

“Anywhere he goes, people will know. Having grown up very poor in Nigeria, Mr Abbas is now paid to pose with high-priced items such as Louis Vuitton bags that people would buy after seeing his posts on Instagram.

“He is an influencer. That’s a job today, as much as it is hard to imagine. That’s a full-time job.”

Judge Jeffrey Gilbert who watched the proceedings from a prison video link, denied Hushpuppi bail on grounds of him being a flight risk. Gilbert ordered that the suspected Nigerian fraudster be remanded in custody until he is taken to a court in California.

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EFCC presents witnesses against Mompha’s alleged accomplices

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has presented witnesses against Mompha’s alleged accomplices, Kayode Phillips and Hamza Koudeih before Justice Muslim S. Hassan of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos.

Philips and Koudeih are alleged to be high-valued targets in Organized Cyber Syndicate Network (OCSN). They were arraigned on November 28, 2019, on 25-count charges bordering on conspiracy and money laundering.

One of the charges read;

“That you, Kayode Phillips (a.k.a Voice of the King) and Hamza Koudeih (a.k.a. HK), sometime in May 2019 within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, conspired among yourselves to commit an offence to wit conversion of the aggregate sum of $7, 069, 000 (Seven Million, Sixty-nine Thousand United States Dollars), £1, 000, 000 (One Million Pounds) and €80,000 (Eighty Thousand Euro) which sums you reasonably ought to have known form part of the proceeds of fraud and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Sections 18 (a), 15 (2)(d) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, 2015 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

Buhari, a forensic expert with the EFCC, gave a detailed account of the findings he made on the computer hard disk and two mobile phones recovered from Philips, the first defendant.

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He disclosed that these included the lead document and transfer instructions to some people.

“My lord, I also found in the phones, chats between the first defendant and some other people, where he was discussing how to market each lead document to them,” he said.

They, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges, thus setting off their trial.

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Justice Hassan subsequently adjourned the matter till July 20 and 21, 2020 for ruling and continuation of trial.

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Okowa, wife, daughter test negative for Covid-19

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Delta State governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, has announced that he, along with his wife and daughter have now tested negative for COVID-19.

Recall that the governor and family were said to have tested positive in late June.

Meanwhile, they have tested negative to the virus, Okowa in a host thanksgiving tweet Tuesday morning charged Deltans to obey all instructions and do all they can to stay safe from contracting the virus.

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The governor posted a picture of himself and his wife wearing same shirt caption “Testify” said:

“My wife, my daughter and I have tested negative for COVID 19, along with other members of the family.

We give God all praise and wish to appreciate all who have interceded for us in prayers.

“I appeal to all residing in Delta to obey all instructions/ regulations in our collective fight to stop the transmission of the virus. God bless you all, Ifeanyi Okowa said.

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