Nigeria: FG plans to implement ECOWAS biometric identity card to enhance border security

WorldStage NewsOnline—-The Federal Government has announced plan to implement the use of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) biometric identity card to enhance border security.

Minister of Interior, Lt.- Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd), made this known on Thursday when participants of Executive Intelligence Management Course (EIMC) 12 of Institute for Security Studies (ISS), Bwari, Abuja, visited him.

He said that it was part of efforts of the government to curb influx of foreigners into the country.

The ministry may sign a Concession Agreement on the Implementation of the ECOWAS Biometric Identity Card with Euphoria Press Limited on Friday.

The minister explained that ECOWAS Free movement protocol would be accompanied by passports and proper documentation.

He said the action plan of every country in ECOWAS would be presented “and we will ensure to work with it.

“We will ensure that we implement the ECOWAS Biometric Identity Card in Nigeria. We will launch it three Months after the signing.’’

He said that the biometric identity card was a prominent feature in the last ECOWAS Summit in December, 2018 in Abuja.

According to him, nobody can cross our border without the ECOWAS identity card; these are some of the security arrangements Nigeria is making to address border security issues.

Danbazau noted that border security was a challenge, adding that Nigerian Immigration Service was responsible for manning the nation’s borders and monitoring movement of people.

“We had to build a good intelligence gathering system so that we can have a good information. This will build our capacity to monitor and respond to these issues,’’ he said.

He added that Nigeria also shared intelligence with neighbouring countries, saying “we are also partnering other countries, especially our strategic neighbours and other European countries and international organisations.

“We are installing a system called Midas to help improve on capacity to monitor our borders, and because of the insurgency in the North-East, we had to partner Nigerian Air Force and build their capacity.’’

He said that Nigeria had provided a number of vehicles for patrol and had established a number of patrol bases across strategic border-States.

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