The Federal Government has ordered telecommunications companies to immediately bar all outgoing calls for all Nigerians who have failed to link Subscribers Identity Modules ( SIM) with their National Identity Numbers ( NIN). It said enforcement of the policy begins from Monday April 4, 2022 as part of necessary steps for security across the nation.
It added it had in the past two years shifted enforcement of the policy at multi times to ensure Nigerians and resident citizens were captured in the database of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).
A statement signed on behalf of the government by the Director of Public Affairs of the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde and the Director of Corporate Communications of NIMC, Mr Kayode Adegoke noted that 125 million SIMs have so far been linked with NIN. It added that 78 million citizens have been issued with unique NINs till date.
The statement reads: “On behalf of the Federal Government, the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, has commended Nigerians and Legal Residents for their support during the exercise to link the National Identification Number (NIN) to the Subscriber Identification Module (SIM).
“As of date, over 125 Million SIMs have had their NINs submitted for immediate linkage, verification and authentication. Similarly, the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has issued over 78 Million unique NINs till date.
“It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, gave the directive for the implementation and commencement of the exercise in December 2020, as part of the administration’s security and social policies. The deadlines for the NIN-SIM linkage has been extended on multiple occasions to allow Nigerians to freely comply with the Policy.
“The FG also took into consideration the passionate appeals by several bodies- Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Civil Societies, Professional Bodies and a host of others – for the extension of the deadlines in the past.
“Accordingly, Mr. President graciously approved the many requests to extend deadlines for the NIN-SIM linkage. At this point however, Government has determined that the NIN-SIM Policy implementation can proceed, as machinery has already been put in place to ensure compliance by citizens and legal residents.
“The implementation impacts on Government’s strategic planning, particularly in the areas of security and socio-economic projections. President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the implementation of the Policy with effect from the 4th of April, 2022. Consequently, the Federal Government has directed all Telcos to strictly enforce the Policy on all SIMs issued (existing and new) in Nigeria.
” Outgoing calls will subsequently be barred for telephone lines that have not complied with the NIN-SIM linkage Policy from the 4th of April, 2022. Subscribers of such lines are hereby advised to link their SIMs to their NINs before the Telcos can lift the restriction on their lines.
“Affected individuals are hereby advised to register for their NINs at designated centers and thereafter link the NINs to their SIMs through the channels provided by NIMC and the telecos, including the NIMC mobile App.”