21 Million Subscribers Yet to Obtain NIN – Telcos

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21 Million Subscribers Yet to Obtain NIN – Telcos
Nwolu Obiajulu

Telecommunications operators on Wednesday said at least 143 million Subscriber Identification Modules, SIM, are currently identifiable to the National Identity Management Commission for registration with their respective National Identity Numbers.

Telecommunication operators also said that the number of subscribers without NINs was about 21 million, as the deadline for the registration of SIMs with valid NINs draws near.

Gbenga Adebayo, Chairman, Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria, while speaking on behalf of the mobile operators said that the number of NINs submitted by the telecoms sector to NIMC was for about 143 million SIMs.

The Nigerian Communications Commission had announced on Tuesday that so far a total of 47.8 million NINs had been collected by the mobile operators.

It said, “At an average of three to four SIMs per subscriber, this means many millions will be linked up before the deadline in February 2021.”

Providing further explanation on the figure released by the government, Adebayo said, “We collected 47.8 million NINs at an average of three to four SIM cards per person or enrollee.

“So, on a further average we have about 3.5 SIMs per person and when multiplied by 47.8 million, that is about 167 million. Now if we take a lower rate, say an average of three SIM cards per person, it is about 143 million SIM cards.”

He added, “Therefore what this means is that about 143 million SIM cards now have their NINs identifiable to the NIMC. This is what the numbers look like right now.”

Responding to a question on the number of subscribers without NINs, Adebayo replied that the figure was around 21 million.

He said, “If we take this number (143 million SIM cards) and compare it with the 207 million subscriber records that we have, then the numbers are not looking bad.

“Because you will be looking at about 63 or 64 million SIM cards that do not have NINs. And at an average of about three SIMs per person, it then means that we have about 20 to 21 million people without NINs yet.”

He added that the telcos hoped that more subscribers would be able to get their NINs, submit the identity numbers to mobile operators and have them forwarded to NIMC before the February 9, 2021 deadline.

Recall that the Federal Government had on December 15, 2020 ordered the blocking of all SIMs not registered with valid NINs after December 30, 2020.

Further extensions have since been given on the deadline.

This post was written by Nwolu Obiajulu.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.

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