Nigeria’s voting age estimation technology under scrutiny, but digital ID applications are on the rise

A former top official at Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Oluwole Uzi-Osaze, says the electoral administration body cannot use facial recognition technology to determine the age of registered voters suspected of being under the legal voting age in the country .

The former Director of Voter Education at INEC spoke on local TV in response to questions related to underage voting, which is particularly common in Nigeria’s northern states, Africa Press reports.

The official suggested addressing the issue of underage registration, INEC Employees must be careful to identify those under the legal voting age. He also complained that in some communities, parents bring their children to voter registration without identification documents such as birth certificates, which puts a lot of pressure on INEC staff.

The problem of underage voting comes at a time when INEC was releasing provisional voter lists for registrants to report any errors for correction before the final register is produced ahead of general elections early next year.

The commission was also sued in August enable biometric authentication of voters without a voter card.

State of Kaduna to improve the welfare of poor children through digital ID

Nigeria’s Kaduna state officials say they are working with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to bring formal education to thousands of children in the Almajiri system, Ripples reports.

The Almajiri is an educational system in northern Nigeria where male children between the ages of 4 and 12, mostly from low-income families, are taught Islamic knowledge, usually without their parents.

The state’s Deputy Governor, Dr. Hadiza Sabuwa Balarabe commented on the news and said her partnership with UNICEF will bring financial inclusion to children through a cash relief program and promote the issuance of birth certificates and digital ID cards.

The deputy governor explained that the program would start with a cash distribution of 5,000 naira (US$11) each to 2,674 children and would then increase to 10,000 naira (US$22).

According to the report, the funding of the program will mainly cover school fees and school meals.

Chief of Digital ID Issuing Authority invited to Accelerator program

Aliyu Aziz, the general director of NigeriaThe issuing authority for digital ID cards – the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) – has been invited to be part of the Tony Blair InstituteTech Policy Accelerator Program by .

A press release issued by NIMC notes that the first accelerator program is for a select group of people African Officials playing a critical role in reimagining how states can harness the potential of technological innovation to drive socio-economic development in the 21st century.

Aziz was acclaimed for driving Nigeria’s Digital ID Programwhich the country sees as a key pillar of its economic growth.

He was appointed Director General of the NIMC in 2015 when just seven million people in Nigeria were registered for digital ID. He is credited with increasing the number to over 90 million in less than seven years.

In September, the Tony Blair Institute a Position as strategic communications consultant for digital ID to work for the digital ID program of Ethiopia.

Article Topics

Age Verification | Biometrics | digital ID | Elections | Face Recognition | National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) | Nigeria


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