Posted by News Express | 5 November 2013 | 4,161 times
The Bankers’ Committee, chaired by Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Mr. Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, has signed an agreement with German firm, Dermalog Identification Systems, for the provision of Biometric data base for the banking industry in Nigeria.
Before putting pen to paper today in Abuja, Sanusi noted that the project, the culmination of a two-year long screening exercise, was not in any way incompatible with the Federal Government’s National Identity Card project.
“This project is not in any way to say the Bankers’ Committee doubts the Federal Government’s National Identity Project,” the Governor stated.
According to him, the project is a collective effort of all the banks in Nigeria aimed at capturing the biometric data of all bank customers in Nigeria for the purpose of verification and identification, while also dealing with fraud.
While disclosing that the first phase of the roll-out is expected to commence in three months, Sanusi said the banking system will continue to maintain its leading position in bringing innovations to the financial system in the country.
The CBN Governor maintained that when the projects comes alive, the Bank’s other initiatives including the Know-Your-Customer (KYC), financial inclusion, as well as pension, credit and access to finance, would be boosted.
On the future of the Nigerian payments system, a visibly elated Sanusi said: “Imagine a situation where you don’t need your card to have access to an ATM; that all you need is your finger prints.”
The Bankers’ Committee Chairman, while congratulating Dermalog and its Nigerian partners, Chams, for winning the contract, also thanked the Chief Executive Officers of banks, particularly members of the Sub-Committee on Biometrics, led by the CEO of Zenith Bank, Godwin Emefiele, for their commitment to the project.
Also speaking, the Managing Director of Dermalog, Mr. Jan Nack, described the selection process as rigorous, noting that the company and its pertners would do their very best to deliver on what he described as the ambitious time-frame set by the Bankers’ Committee.
He disclosed that his company had done similar projects for governments and organisations in Brunei, Cambodia and Malaysia, adding that they would work towards training Nigerians in a bid to hand over skills to them.
Also speaking, the German Ambassador to Nigeria, Mrs. Dorothee Janetzke-Wenzel, expressed happiness that Nigerians noted German companies for their efficiency and ability to transfer skills.
In a vote of thanks, CBN Deputy Governor (Operations), Mr. Tunde Lemo, commended Governor Sanusi, whom he said had exhibited great courage in transforming the fortunes of the banking industry in Nigeria. He also lauded the Bankers’ Committee for its determination as well as the German firm for its commitment to transfer technology to the Nigerians, whom it will be training.
The German company has promised to ensure that the project will go live three months from now, when the CBN, head offices of commercial banks and few of their branches would be able to access the biometric system.
The high point of the ceremony was the signing of the agreement by Mr. Sanusi, on behalf of the Bankers’ Committee, and Mr. Jan Nack on behalf of Dermalog Identification Systems.
The occasion was attended by three Deputy Governors of the Bank, Chief Executive Officers of some banks, representatives of switching companies, and other stakeholders in the financial industry.
•Photo shows Bankers’ Committee Chairman Sanusi.
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