By Omon-Julius Onabu
The National Identity Card Management Commission (NICMC) has received knocks from the Delta State Council of Traditional Rulers for failing to register most qualified Deltans and residents of the state since the exercise kicked off seven years ago in 2013.
The royal fathers expressed their dissatisfaction with the Commission’s low level of performance in Delta State in a communiqué issued at the end of their meeting in Asaba, yesterday.
They also expressed worry at the growing cases of infection with the COVID-19 in the country and sued for demonstration of more individual responsibility by obeying the protocols prescribed by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
In the three-point communique presented by the Chairman of the Council, Dr. Emmanuel Efeizomor II, Obi of Owa Kingdom, the royal fathers remarked that only a little over one million people have been registered out of over four million Deltans since the NICMC commenced registration in 2013.
The council decried the abysmal performance of the commission, saying that only 48,000 National Identity cards had been produced so far from the about one million registered in the last seven years.
The monarchs stressed that out of the 48,000 cards so far produced, only 20,000 had been delivered to the registrants, describing the development “as a deliberate ploy to reduce the number of those registered and to shortchange Delta State.”
They emphasised that there were five activation centres in Delta State but which presently non-functional, pointing out that there was no well-articulated method of registration and points of collection to the detriment of the people of the state.
The monarchs, therefore, called on the relevant federal government agency or supervisory ministry to adopt a more proactive measure to facilitate the registration of Deltans to enable them obtain the National Identity Card speedily and without stress.
The traditional rulers also expressed concern over the increasing rate of COVID-19 infection in the country due to the widespread disregard for and breach of stipulated protocols and urged Deltans to stay safe and healthy at all times.
The monarchs appreciated God while expressing delight at the quick recovery of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, his wife and daughter from the COVID-19 infection.
Similarly, the royal fathers thanked God for the speedy recovery of the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Chiedu Ebie, the State Commissioner of Information, Mr. Charles Aniagwu from the Coronavirus and wished all those at various isolation centres across the state speedy recovery.
The meeting was attended by traditional rulers from across the state, including the second Vice-Chairman of the Council and Pere of Akugbene-Mien, S.P. Kalanama VIII, among others.