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Chams Holdings ends partnership with FG

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By Abraham Adekunle

Nigeria has incurred $100m in national ID debt with the company.

A company focused on identity management and verification services, Chams Holdings Plc, has announced that it will no longer collaborate with the Federal Government of Nigeria on any project. The company stated that it suffered a whooping $100 million debt which it blames on the government. Demola Aladekomo, Chairman of the Chams Group, made this known to the public during the company’s “Facts Behind The Figures” presentation at the Nigerian Exchange Limited. Speaking to industry stakeholders, Aladekomo revealed that the major project that the company was supported to get done failed.

He said that they were hired based on the antecedents after the firm pioneered the e-payment system and other technologies and delivered the Independent National Electoral Commission project at that time. “Unfortunately, we got into the National ID debacle from where we lost about 100 million dollars due to government irresponsibility,” he said. He further said that the government made life impossible for the company, leading to a $100 million loss during the National ID project.

Firm has had issues with identity commission since 2015.

However, Aladekumo shed light on his company’s efforts to rejuvenate operations. According to him, the leadership has prioritized the business’ stability for the past six quarters. He stated that the company has witnessed rapid growth since then. To maintain this growth rate without interruption, the company would no longer work with the government or any entity affiliated with it. “We only deal with consumer projects; that means serving you,” he noted. “We deal only in digital projects and we are looking at Nigeria and Africa.” In the next couple of months, the firm would have covered Nigeria and can then focus on West Africa.

Aladekomo said that the firm has avoided anything that has to do with the government apart from regulators. To put this in context, the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) and Chams Plc have been at loggerheads since 2015 when the former terminated the latter’s contract over non-performance claims. The issue gained more traction when Chams Plc accused the NIMC of playing a major role in its poor performance. Aladekomo further blamed the NIMC for allegedly stealing intellectual property and technical partners belonging to Chams. However, NIMC debunked the claim in a press statement.

The group is looking at finishing the year strong.

Mayowa Olaniyan, the group’s managing director, said that the company’s half-year results are mainly positive. As such, she stated that the company hopes to maintain the impressive run recorded in the first half of 2023 until the year ends. She added that more focus will be on cost-optimization efforts to reduce expenses while increasing the business value. The group is poised for innovation that will revolutionize the payment and technology industry with fast, secure and reliable platforms, she said, further adding that they have plans to expand product lines through collaborations and partnerships.

Meanwhile, in order to address the mounting challenges associated with the issuance of National Identity Numbers (NIN) and passports, the Federal Government has moved the NIMC to the Ministry of Interior. This move aims to streamline the processes related to NIN and passport clearance, which are essential prerequisites for securing international passports and various other travel-related documents. Previously, the NIMC operated under the Ministry of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy. But this pressing need has prompted the strategic realignment.

NIMC is working on innovations to address challenges faced by Nigerians.

Kayode Adegoke, the Head of Corporate Communications at NIMC, confirmed the development and emphasized that the agency is actively working on innovations to address the challenges faced by Nigerians. He said that Nigerians will have opportunities to make online requests for changes of dates of birth, or any updates regarding their personal information. They will apply online and get responses real-time. Under the Buhari administration, the NIMC and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) collaborated to integrate NIN with Subscriber Identity Modules (SIM) as part of a broader strategy to address challenges related to kidnapping, banditry, and terrorism in the country.

Related Links

Chams HoldCo:   Website  NIMC:   Website

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