The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has ordered MTN, Airtel, Glo, 9moble to bar over 72 million active subscribers from making calls.
The restriction is coming following the failure of subscribers to link their SIM cards with their National Identification Number (NIN) since the deadline expired on March 31.
The recent directive by NCC was jointly signed in a statement by by Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, the Director of Public Affairs of the Nigerian Communications Commission, and Mr Kayode Adegoke, the Head, Corporate Communications at the Nigeria Identity Management Commission.
The statement read, ““Accordingly, Mr. President graciously approved the many requests to extend deadlines for the NIN-SIM linkage. At this point, however, the 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 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 April 4, 2022.”
Geeky Nigeria reports that over 125 million SIMs submitted their NINs for linkage, while over 78 million unique NINs have been issued. Notwithstanding, the deadline for the NIN-SIM linkage had been extended a total of nine times to allow subscribers catch up.