The deadline for the ongoing National Identification Number (NIN) and Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) integration exercise has been extended by eight weeks. The new deadline is April 6, 2021.
Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, was said to have announced the decision at a meeting of the ministerial taskforce on NIN-SIM registration on Monday.
A statement issued by the communications ministry said, “Dr Pantami stated that the extension is to give Nigerians and legal residents more time to integrate their NIN with the SIM.
”The meeting was chaired by the Honourable Minister and attended by key stakeholders, including the EVC/CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), DG/CEO of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC),DG/CEO of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) and the Chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON). Others include the MD/CEOs of MTN, Airtel, 9Mobile, Ntel, Spectranet and SMILE, as well as the COO of Globacom.
”It was reported that a total of 56.18 million NINs have been collected by the mobile network operators. Each NIN is usually tied to an average of 3 to 4 SIMs and this infers that the current figure accounts for a significant portion of the existing SIMs. This number of NINs collected represents a significant increase when compared with the 47.8 million reported by the Technical Committee on January 18, 2021.
“Furthermore, over 1060 registration centres for NIN have been activated and made operational by NIMC across the country, while Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) have opened hundreds of centres and are rapidly deploying resources to open thousands of other NIN enrolment centres across states of the country. This is in line with the policy of the administration of President MuhammaduBuhari to enhance security and make the process of obtaining NINs easier for Nigerians.”
The 4th of February was the initial deadline, which has now been shifted.
There have been concerns regarding crowds converging on NIMC centres to enrol for NIN amid COVID-19 second wave. But the management of NIMC said it has put in place measures to check surging of crowds.