The Nigerian military has planned a nationwide operation to demand identity cards from citizens in all the 36 states of the federation.
‘Operation Positive Identification’ would see soldiers asking citizens on the streets or highways to produce means of identification on the spot.
The Nigerian troops had been taking similar measures to separate citizens from terrorists in the Boko Haram-ravaged northeastern part of Nigeria.
The military claimed last month that citizens in the North-east had been cooperating with troops to make the exercise successful by carrying with them valid identity documents.
But the military announced on September 25 that the exercise will be extended nationwide to “checkmate bandits, kidnappers, armed robbers, ethnic militia, cattle rustlers as well as other sundry crimes across the various regions of Nigeria.”
The announcement came simultaneously with the awareness about the 2019 edition of the military ‘s anti-crime operations such as ‘Ayem Akpatuma’ in the North-central; ‘Egwu Eke’ in the South-east and ‘Crocodile Smile’ in the South-south and South-west.
Although ‘Operation Positive Identification’ was initially billed to commence alongside the anti-crime patrols on October 7, it was held for additional preparation. Military sources told PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday that the exercise will now commence early next November.
Citizens have been warned to carry a valid means of identification, especially voter’s card, national identity card, driver’s licence, international passport, whenever they are going out to avoid being seen as criminally-minded by soldiers.
Already, some firms have started issuing advisory to their staff members ahead of the planned military operation