Cablegate: Nigeria: Seven U.S. Companies Bid for National Id

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.



E.O. 12958: N/A


1. (U) Summary. Seven U.S. companies, in two separate
consortia, made oral presentations for a USD 200 million
national identification card project on June 28. The actual
presentation of bid proposals appeared to be open and
transparent, with a total of four consortia competing for the
bid. However, is alleged that the French government may be
placing intense pressure on the GON to choose the French
consortium. End Summary.

2. On June 28, Ambassador Jeter and EconOffs attended the
oral presentations of seven U.S. companies (in two consortia)
in their bid for the national identification card project,
worth approximately USD 200 million. All four consortia
presented their proposals in front of a wide audience of GON
officials and interested diplomatic representatives. GON
officials included President Obasanjo, Vice President
Abubakar, the Minister, Deputy Minster, and Permanent
Secretary for Internal Affairs, Chief of the Independent

National Electoral Commission, and Senate Chairman of the
Committee on National Identification Cards. Post was
encouraged by the open and transparent manner in which the
bidding process was conducted, and the lively questioning
that ensued following the presentations.

3. Per Ref email, DOC earlier had advised Ambassador Jeter
to represent Datacard and Polaroid, as the only U.S. concerns
for the project, at the June 28 presentation. To demonstrate
USG support for Datacard's bid, Ambassador Jeter prepared a
letter to Vice President Abubakar on behalf of the company.
However, the letter went undelivered because the Ambassador
discovered, after arriving at the presentation venue, that
there were in fact five other U.S. companies bidding for the
project as partners in the Mint/Crest consortium. These
companies are East Shore Technologies, NCS Pearson, Omicron,
Oracle, and IBM.

4. President Obasanjo commented, as an aside, that only three
of the four consortia are competitive: Crest/Mint, Chams
(Datacard and Polaroid), and a consortium of French
companies. The Government of France (GOF) appears to be very
active in promoting its companies in the tendering process.
During the course of the presentations, several of the U.S.
companies commented to Ambassador Jeter that the GOF was
putting significant pressure on the GON on behalf of the
French consortium. For example, one company representative
suggested that the French government had offered bilateral
debt cancellation in exchange for award of the contract.
Moreover, the French Foreign Minister arrived in Abuja that
same evening on a long scheduled visit, and upon arrival
would undoubtedly be in a position to pressure the GON to
accept the French bid.

5. Comment. Unfortunately, Post was not informed in advance
of five of the seven U.S. companies bidding for the national
ID project and, therefore, the Ambassador was unable to
provide a specific endorsement of any one or combination of
U.S. companies. As it turned out, Ambassador Jeter who sat
just left of President Obasanjo, felt compelled to stay for
all of the U.S. companies' presentations, a total of about
seven hours. In his statement, Ambassador Jeter said that
all of the U.S. companies represented were eminently
qualified for this project and expressed the hope that there
would be American participation. The companies present
seemed satisfied with the approach and expressed deep
gratitude for an Embassy presence.

6. Comment Continued: Post is encouraged by President
Obasanjo's efforts to make the bidding process open and
transparent for this high profile national project (one
dogged, unfortunately, with extensive allegations of waste
and corruption for years). The tendering process, at least
at this semi-public event, appears to have been on a level
playing field. A Statehouse official told the Ambassador on
June 29 that President Obasanjo and his team will take a few
weeks to assess their findings and impressions and will make
an announcement of their decision at such time. End Comment.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Syria: Economic Decline, Rising Hunger And Surging Humanitarian Needs

Syria’s fragile economy has “suffered multiple shocks” over the past 18 months, with its currency plummeting and joblessness swelling as people struggle to cover their basic needs, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council ... More>>

OECD: Final Quarter Of 2020 Shows Continued Recovery In G20 International Merchandise Trade

G20 international merchandise trade continued to rebound in the fourth quarter of 2020 ( exports up 7.2% and imports up 6.8%), following the sharp falls seen in the first half of 2020, as lockdown measures affected trade globally. Although growth ... More>>

UN Report: Civilian Casualties Surged After Peace Talks Began In Afghanistan

Monitoring by the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, UNAMA, and the UN Human Rights Office has revealed that despite a drop in civilians killed and injured overall in 2020 there was a rise in civilian casualties following the start of peace negotiations ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

2021: Critical Year To ‘reset Our Relationship With Nature’ – UN Chief

During this time of “crisis and fragility”, the UN chief told the United Nations Environment Assembly on Monday that human well-being and prosperity can be vastly improved by prioritizing nature-based solutions. Painting a picture of the turmoil ... More>>

Paris Agreement: UN Secretary-General António Guterres To Mark U.S. Reentry With Envoy For Climate John Kerry

Watch live at UN Secretary-General António Guterres will join U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John F. Kerry at an event marking the United States’ reentry into the Paris Agreement this Friday. The discussion with the Secretary-General ... More>>

WeBeliev: Scoop In Conversation With Abhishek Sinha, Founder Of WeBeliev, An NZ Crowdfunding Platform

WeBeliev supports 17 SDGs, launching sector specific campaigns every month Q. What is WeBeliev and why did you start it? A. WeBeliev is a Singapore-registered crowdfunding platform aimed at fundraising for all the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) ... More>>