MTN, Airtel, Others To Bar Sim Not Link To NIN By February 2024

MTN, Airtel, Others To Bar Sim Not Linked To NIN By February 2024

5 months ago
1 min read

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has instructed major telecom operators like MTN, Airtel, and Globacom to enforce complete network barring for all phone lines lacking National Identification Numbers (NINs) by February 28, 2024.

This action aims to ensure compliance with identity verification requirements.

“Effective immediately, all lines without verified NINs will face complete barring,” stated an NCC representative during a press briefing, emphasizing the urgency of the situation.

MTN Nigeria, in a disclosure to the Nigeria Stock Exchange, outlined the stringent measures mandated by the NCC. Not only are unsubmitted NINs facing full barring, but even submitted but unverified NINs will also experience the same fate.

READ ALSO: Why Competition Is Vital For Telecom Sector Growth- NCC

The NCC’s directive, escalating from earlier restrictions imposed in April 2022, underscores the necessity for biometric and biodata verification for all affected subscribers before line unblocking.

In response, MTN assured stakeholders of its commitment to compliance, stating, “We’re intensifying efforts to engage subscribers, enhancing service outlets, and collaborating with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to expedite NIN verification.”

Expressing the company’s dedication to supporting the government’s National Identity Management System, MTN urged immediate action from subscribers yet to link their NINs or enroll for one.

Since the inception of the mandatory NIN-SIM linkage exercise in December 2020, telecom operators faced subscription losses, surpassing 20 million, due to subscriber line abandonment.

However, subsequent registrations elevated active subscriptions across the four major networks to over 200 million by August.

Nevertheless, the stringent network barring directive threatens a potential decline in operator databases from February, impacting millions of restricted lines facing complete barring.

The fate of millions of subscribers’ phone lines hangs in the balance as the deadline approaches, urging swift action for compliance before severe network restrictions take effect.

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