NIN-SIM Card Linkage: Buhari Extends Deadline Till February 9
Association of Licensed Telecommunication Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) on Wednesday said the deadline for Nigerians to link their National Identity Number to the SIM cards has been extended till February 9.
On December 15, 2020, Federal Government declared that after December 30, 2020, all SIMs that were not registered with valid NINs on the network of telecommunications companies would be blocked.
It later extended the December 30, 2020 deadline following widespread opposition against the earlier announcement and gave three weeks’ extension for subscribers with NIN from December 30, to January 19, 2021.
It also gave six weeks’ extension for subscribers without NIN from December 30, 2020, to February 9, 2021.
However, before the January deadline, many telephone users and organisations called for a further deadline extension or outright suspension of the NIN registration process due to the large number of people that are yet to get their NINs.
At the expiration of the January 19 deadline, Nigerians went into panic mode, following the consistent statements by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Ibrahim Pantami that those who didn’t meet the deadline will be blocked.
On Wednesday, the Federal Government yielded to the cry of the people by suspending the blockage of lines on January 19.
In a statement signed by ALTON’s Chairman, Engr. Gbenga Adebayo, the directive to extend the deadline was given by President Muhammadu Buhari, as confirmed by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Channels TV reports.
The statement said;
We want to thank the President for giving us more time to deliver on this all-important assignment of creating a credible national identity database for the country.
We are also grateful to the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ibrahim Ali Pantami, for his commitment to enabling digital economy.
To ensure that we utilize the extension period judiciously, we urge all telecom subscribers who have a NIN to link it to their SIM Cards through available channels as soon as possible. Those yet to enroll are advised to visit www.nimc.gov.ng for a list of enrolment centres close to them.