The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has given telecommunications operators in the country two weeks to block all SIM cards that are not registered with the National Identity Numbers (NIN).
NCC Director of Public Affairs, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde who announced this in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja said the directive was part of the decision reached at the end of a meeting with the Minister of communications and key stakeholders in the communications industry.
The meeting had in attendance the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and Management of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), as well as the CEOs and Management staff of all service providers in the industry.
Adinde said the meeting was convened by the Minister following the earlier directive on the suspension of new SIM registration by network operators.
He said that the need to consolidate the achievements of 2019 SIM registration audit and improve the performance to sanitise the sector was exhaustively discussed at the meeting.
He also disclosed that all stakeholders agreed that drastic measures have become inevitable to improve the integrity and transparency of the SIM registration process.
Adinde however highlighted the decisions taken at the meeting which is for immediate implementation by all Network Operators to include :
” Affirmationn of the earlier directive to totally suspend registration of NEW SIMs by all operators.”
” Operators to require ALL their subscribers to provide valid National Identification Number (NIN) to update SIM registration records.”
” The submission of NIN by subscribers to take place within two weeks (from Wednesday, December 16, 2020 and end by 30 December, 2020).
” After the deadline, ALL SIMs without NINs are to be blocked from the networks.”
” A Ministerial Task Force comprising the Minister and all the CEOs (among others) as members is to monitor compliance by all networks.”
” Violations of this directive will be met by stiff sanctions, including the possibility of withdrawal of operating license.”
He urged Nigerians to ensure that their NINs were captured in their SIM registration data, adding that all inconveniences which might be occasioned by the directive were deeply regretted.
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