NIDS Implementation Taskforce holds first meeting | Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News | Loop News

Deputy Commissioner-General at the Tax Administration of Jamaica (TAJ), Hank Williams, has said when the National Identification System (NIDS) is implemented, it will solve a lot of the issues users of tax collectorates face while conducting business.

“I am sure it will cut down the traffic and excess time spent at tax offices island-wide,”said Williams. He was speaking Thursday at the first meeting of the NIDS Implementation Taskforce (ITF).

According to Williams, NIDS is slated to drive the transfer of motor vehicle transactions online, such as the renewal of driver’s licences and motor vehicle transfers. This, he said, will significantly reduce the need for persons to be present inside tax offices to transact business.

“The ITF will spearhead the development and implementation of these and other high-value use cases,” Williams stated.

Similar sentiments were echoed by the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), which was also represented at the ITF meeting. Members have indicated that they anticipate the simplification of the services they offer to the public with the National ID.

President of the Jamaica Bankers’ Association (JBA), Septimus Blake, said the financial institutions are looking forward to using NIDS to deliver innovative services to Jamaicans. He noted that the existing forms of identity verification are a high cost to financial institutions.

Meanwhile, Programme Director of the NIDS Project, Dr Warren Vernon, told the ITF that the NIDS card production and vetting centre is 95 per cent completed.

For his part, Minister without Portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister and Chairman of the NIDS ITF, Floyd Green, chaired Thursday’s meeting of the taskforce. He tasked members with driving the adoption of the National Identification Card.

Green had previously announced that the ITF would be created by the end of the first quarter of the year to begin its work on the implementation strategies.

Speaking at the meeting, Green said the taskforce’s role is to make the lives of Jamaicans easier.

“The establishment of partnerships between the Government of Jamaica and the private sector is essential in adopting and using the National Identification Card. The card will, for example, assist the unbanked in opening accounts with financial institutions, and I am happy that there is already buy-in from our banks,” said Green.

The pilot is set to transform identity verification and authentication with the financial sector, ministries, agencies and departments of Government, bolstering the beginning of the national digital transformation drive.

Javon Moatt representing the National Youth Advisory Council on the ITF, indicated that “young people are anticipating NIDS for ease of transactions, and a one-stop-shop, online Government portal where we can use NIDS to access services.”

Green reiterated the need for the public’s confidence in the security of the cards, as they possess high-level encryption features with governance and oversight to deter misuse. The NIDS pilot is to guide the system’s national rollout.

The membership of the ITF includes the Inter-American Development Bank, the JBA, the PSOJ, the Credit Union League of Jamaica, the Project Executing Unit and representatives from the National Youth Advisory Council.