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Gates Foundation Doubles Down on Push For Digital ID and Payments in Nigeria

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Bill Gates, the World Economic Forum, and various “enlisted” UN agencies (and the EU not far behind) all in one place – what could go right?

This time, the “joint undertaking” is the promotion of digital public infrastructure (DPI).

Save the UN, which is supposed to be “the world organization,” all these other actors blatantly represent rich elites; but a lot of their focus with the DPI push is now on underdeveloped or developing countries of “the third world.”

Related: Digital ID, Bill Gates vaccine record, and payments system combo to be trialed in Africa

There are two schools of thought about why this is so: that these entities and individuals are genuine, selfless benefactors who want to share their good fortune by, say, “making the world a better place”; or, that they purposefully target countries where legislation and regulation makes it easier to carry out many types of social, economic, etc. experiments than would be the case “at home.”

That’s for observers to analyze, as DPI promoters emphatically claim only the best intentions. Like, for example, the Gates Foundation working to “expand Nigeria’s economic growth opportunities” via DPI.

The ongoing experiment in this case is development and implementation of digital IDs and digital payments by the end of the decade, in as many places as possible, and that is the core intent behind the term “DPI,” which many see as simply a UN, EU, Gates, etc., buzzword.

Regarding Nigeria, the Gates Foundation President for Global Growth and Opportunities Rodger Voorhies is actually “challenging” the country’s government to make more investments in creating a “DPI ecosystem.” That’s despite the fact Nigeria’s effort thus far has been described as “robust” – but apparently, it can “do better.”

There’s no mistake the Gates Foundation is dead set on pushing this agenda anywhere it can. As reports put it, it is “leading a global fund-raising campaign for the development of DPI.”

To challenge Nigeria’s government, Voorhies was right there in its capital recently, speaking to the Nigeria Governors’ Forum. The forum heard the usual elevator pitch for DPIs – secure and “seamless” access to various services, etc.

Meanwhile, critics are warning about a sort of “centralization of surveillance” that would impact people’s financial sovereignty and other civil rights.

The UN is not lagging far behind in talking up DPIs and incentivizing countries to use them, apparently, via any channel available, from developmental to cultural agencies (UNDP, UNESCO).

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