No phone calls without biometric ID? World Bank guinea pig Nigeria shows what could soon come to you

8 June 2022 | Nigeria’s government has recently started requiring all SIM cards to be linked to the National Identification Number (citizen number). 73 million SIM cards were blocked in April. This is how the global surveillance programme ID2020 is enforced. Thanks to support from the IMF, Nigeria is also the fist major country with a digital central bank currency. They will not be satisfied with having pushed these things thorugh in Nigeria. It will come to you, too.

In a press statement issued by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) on 4 April, Nigeria’s Minister of Communications and Digital Economy commended the country’s residents “for their support in linking the National Identification Number (NIN) to the Abonnierenr Identification Module (SIM)”.

In reality, however, support for the coercive measure, which is motivated by security policy and social policy, is not that strong. It is primarily about fighting terror and crime. Although the citizen’s number with biometric data has been around for ten years, and is officially required if you want something from banks or many authorities, only 78 million of the 220 million Nigerians have had a number issued, according to the press release.

After the obligation to have one’s SIM card (SIM = Abonnierenr Identification Module) linked to the citizen number, which had already been decided in 2020, was postponed several times at the pleading of the telecom providers, it was made impossible for all non-linked mobile phone customers to make calls as of 4 April. According to a report by Thomson Reuters, this affected one third of all mobile phones, about 73 million.

A dozen other African countries have similar laws requiring SIM cards to be linked to citizen numbers. This is no coincidence. The World Bank has been behind an “NGO” called ID4Africa for eight years, which wants to push digital biometric enrolment of all citizens. The Gates Foundation and various Western governments have raised the necessary funds.

Nigeria and other West African countries are a preferred area for social experiments for the drivers of surveillance capitalism such as the Gates Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, World Bank and World Economic Forum. Among other things, these are pursuing the ID2020 project, which aims to give every person on earth a digital biometric number by 2030.This will serve to allow computer algorithms to reliably collect and merge all data about these people.

The enrolment of all Nigerians with a biometric citizen number and associated database is being promoted by the World Bank.

The Nigerian Identity Commission also issues Mastercard biometric identity cards (eID cards) with payment function.

It fits nicely, that in October 2021, the Central Bank of Nigeria, with the support of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), became the first major country (after the Bahamas) to issue a digital central bank money to which the entire population theoretically has access, the eNaira. The IMF writes on this:

The eNaira is account-based, and transactions are in principle fully traceable, unlike token-based crypto asset transactions. Once the eNaira becomes more widespread and embedded into the economy, it may bring greater transparency to informal payments and strengthen the tax base.“

The IMF is assuring Nigeria of its support for the project and the all the other central banks of the world of its willingness to share its experience and lessons learned from the Nigerian expiriment in large scale population surveillance.

In Germany, where I live, everything is going in the same direction. The tax identification number has been expanded into a citizen number – breaking all previous promises -, so that data from interactions with a multitude of authorities can be directly retrieved under this number. Anonymous SIM cards have been banned. All that is missing is the link to the citizen number to make the identification of telephone customers watertight and to optimise automatic surveillance.

As for digital central bank money, the European Central Bank is working on it and the EU Commission wants to adopt the necessary regulation as early as the first quarter of 2023.

Most other central banks are working on it, too.


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