Understanding the Impediments to the Harmonization of Disparate Digital Identity Schemes in Africa: The Case of Nigeria


Authors : Elvis Otsemehuno Ogah

Volume/Issue : Volume 6 - 2021, Issue 5 - May

Google Scholar : http://bitly.ws/9nMw

Scribd : https://bit.ly/3vuFgnH

This Research aims to understand the impediments to harmonization of disparate identity schemes in Africa from the Nigerian lens. A mixed method was adopted for data generation. Content analysis of secondary data from journals, books, reports, magazines, internet and other archival resources were explored extensively. For primary data, in-depth interviews were conducted to harvest thoughts of key stakeholders with a view to solidifying the empirical aspect of the work. In order to induce clarity, key concepts related to identity management such as Digital Identity, Interoperability and Harmonization were expounded upon. The study brings to fore the current disorder in the Nigerian identity ecosystem and the legal, organizational and technological impediments to harmonization of disparate identity schemes in the country. To foster an orderly development of an identity environment that would drive e-governance and support a local digital economy, the study recommends that, rather than migrating all existing data into a single national repository, all existing databases in the country, be they foundational or functional, be updated with a unique identifier called the NIN which will serve as the common denominator across all databases.

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