The ongoing National Identification Number (NIN) and Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) integration exercise has been extended by 8 weeks, with a new deadline of April 6, 2021.
This message was conveyed by the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami) during the meeting of the Ministerial Taskforce on NIN-SIM registration held on February 1, 2021.
Dr Pantami stated that the extension is to give Nigerians and legal residents more time to integrate their NIN with the SIM.
However, 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 1,060 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 Muhammadu Buhari to enhance security and make the process of obtaining NINs easier for Nigerians.
In addition, Dr. Pantami reiterates the need for Nigerians and legal residents, who are yet to register for the NIN, to be diligent and take advantage of the extension to enrol for their NIN and link with their SIMs.
The Honourable minister implores applicants to follow the safety guidelines at all the NIN enrolment centers and ensure compliance with the booking system in place.
This protocol is in line with the Executive Order on COVID-19 2020 signed by President Muhammadu Buhari on the 27th of January 2021, in keeping with the provisions of the Quarantine Act 2004.
It is noteworthy that Sections 27 and 29 of the NIMC Act 2007 provides for the mandatory use of NIN for transactions, including application and issuance of a passport, opening of personal bank accounts, purchase of insurance policies, voter registration, obtaining credit, among others.
The Federal Government of Nigeria applauds all Nigerians and persons of other nationalities for their understanding, cooperation and for enthusiastically participating in the exercise.
The Honourable Minister also commended the efforts of NIMC, NCC, MNOs and all other relevant government and private sector organisations for their unflinching support towards the success of the exercise.