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HomeTop NewsNigeria bars outgoing calls on SIMs not linked with national identity database

Nigeria bars outgoing calls on SIMs not linked with national identity database

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By Samuel Bankole 

Nigeria on Monday said it has directed all telecoms firms to bar all outgoing calls from telephone lines that are not linked to the National Identity database as the West African country announced that it has linked 125 million SIMs to the database.

In a statement issued by the National Communication Commission (NCC) and the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), it said a total of 78 Million unique National Identification Number (NIN) has been registered to date.

It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari, 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 have 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, the statement said that President Buhari graciously approved the many requests to extend deadlines for the NIN-SIM linkage.

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It said 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.

“President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the implementation of the Policy with effect from April 4, 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 Telcos, including the NIMC mobile App,” the statement signed by NCC Director of Public Affairs, Ikechukwu Adinde and head of corporate communication of NIMC, Kayode Adegoke said.

The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami was quoted as commending Nigerians and Legal Residents for their support during the exercise to link NIN to their SIM.

The Minister also emphasized that enrolment for the NIN is a continuous exercise and NIN is a precondition for service in Telcos, banks, Nigerian Immigration Service, and for several other government services. He also encouraged Nigerians and legal residents to visit NIN registration centers for the enrollment and issuance of valid NINs.

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