By Chimezie Anaso
Some Anambra residents who thronged the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) office in the state on Thursday, have expressed frustration over their inability to be registered and obtain their National Identity Number (NIN).
A Correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) who visited the NIMC office in Amawbia, near Awka, reports that the entrance gate into the office was locked as the applicants loitered around.
Some of the applicants said they arrived the office as early as 5:30 a.m. with the aim of being attended to early, before going to their workplaces.
Mrs Njideka Anumudu, a nursing mother, said she had been visiting the office since last December without being registered.
Anumudu said she was there on Wednesday and left very late in the evening after she was given a form to photocopy and fill.
The applicant said she was there to submit the form and be registered, but had spent over four hours there as the gate remained locked and no official was talking to anybody.
“The information we got is that they are on strike,” she said.
Mr Jideofor Chukwujekwu said he came from Onitsha after his previous attempts to register at NIMC offices in some local government areas failed, describing the exercise as “unnecessary burden on Nigerians.”
Chukwujekwu said NIMC should have adequate machines and manpower to be able to register all Nigerians before the deadline.
He expressed fears that millions of Nigerians might not be registered befor the deadline at the rate the process was currently going.
“It is frustrating and I am getting tired. If they want to freeze our phone lines for not having identification number, let them do so.
“How can we be registered when the people in charge are not working?
“They say they don’t have power supply, they don’t have machines, yet they want to conclude registration this month, “ he said.
Another applicant who pleaded anonymity claimed that due process was not being followed.
An official of the commission who gave his name as Austin refused to give details of what the challenges were, but simply said “we are not working.”