The Nigerian Government Thursday, 15 April, 2021 said telecommunications companies will resume registration, activation and replacement of SIM cards on April 19, months after the process was halted.
But the registration will follow the new policy guidlines approved by the government, a spokesman for Isa Ali Pantanmi, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy said in a statement.
“We are cracking down on multiple SIM registrations and fraudulent sales carried out by corrupt vendors to facilitate fraud and other dubious activities,” the Nigerian Communication Commission said in statement in December.
The new policy makes it mandatory for anyone to be issued SIM to have the National Identity Number.
“The issuance of New SIMs and other suspended activities will resume on the same date, as long as verification is done and the guidelines are fully adhered to,” Femi Adeluyi, a techinical assistant Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, said.
“The Honourable Minister has also directed NCC and NIMC to ensure that the provisions of the Policy are strictly followed by all operators and subscribers.”
According to the statement, possession of a National Identity Number (NIN) will be a prerequisite for new SIM acquisition and activation, SIM replacement, new SIM activation for corporates and Internet-of-Things/Machine-to-
Machine (IoT/M2M), amongst others.
Corporate registration, institutions will be required to appoint a telecoms master (at the minimum of an executive management level) to provide the operational primary NIN representation. The Telecoms master will also be responsible to ensuring that the users provide their NINs to serve as a Secondary NIN.
“The revised policy will ensure that operators conform to the required standards for biometric capture,” Adeluyi said.
“The Guidelines in the Policy have been painstakingly developed and while they are thorough, it should be noted that they have been developed that way in National interest since the SIM is essentially a national resource. Citizens and legal residents are encouraged to bear with the government as the process has been developed in the best interest of the country.”