From Tony Osauzo, Benin
The Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Edo State chapter, Col David Imuse (retd) has condemned the plan by the Edo State government to issue Residency Identity Cards, to Nigerians residing in the state as part of its plans for the development, growth and progress of the state, after spending six years in office.
Imuse in a statement, said Sections 25 and 26 of the Nigerian Constitution as amended, explicate where the powers to decide who a citizen is and therefore identify him or her with the National Identity Number (NIN ), adding that that function resides with the Federal government.
“This shows inconsistency and lack of direction on the part of the governor. We call for a halt to this effort because it is dead on arrival. The Federal Government through the Nigeria Identity Management Commission has already settled these issues. Any effort by any state government is a wasteful duplication that is not only illegal but self-serving.
“Governor Obaseki is displaying ignorance if he claims not to be aware that Citizenship of Nigeria and by extension, residency is a status that is legally granted to all Nigerians by birth and enables them to enjoy all the privileges and responsibilities that comes with that status.
“If the Edo state government is serious about identifying all Nigerians of Edo State origin residing in the state, the simple process is to boost awareness about the National Identity Number, NIN, encourage more citizens to get their NIN and thereafter liaise with the relevant Federal Agencies to get the data for all Edo residents. This is the proper thing to do,” Imuse stated.
He said this explains why he labelled the annual Alaghodaro Summit by Governor Godwin Obaseki-led factional PDP Government as a hollow ritual as it exposes the incompetence and lack of ideas on the part of the governor.
“How can a serious government whose tenure ends in the second quarter of 2024 by setting a target to issue one million cards to Nigerian citizens in Edo State before the fourth quarter of 2024?
“Recall that earlier this year the same governor said all persons residing in Edo will be registered and given the identity card which will be linked to their Bank Verification Number (BVN) for proper identification, due to the growing trend of insecurity in the state. Today he said the Edo State Resident Identity Card is for people living in the state and for those who want to stay in Edo and that it will now be linked to the NIN.
“As far as our party is concerned, Edo State does not need a New Residency Card linked or unlinked to the National Identity Number. As a party, we urge all our citizens to shun the invitation to go out and register themselves to be issued with this fake card, because the card is illegal and fraudulent,” the Edo State APC Chairman added.
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