The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has clarified the importance of the National Identification Number (NIN) linkage to SIM numbers.
The commission in a communiqué released on Thursday and signed by Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, the director of public affairs of the NCC, stated that the linking of SIMs to NIN would have ‘far-reaching benefits’ like ensuring general safety and helping in national budgeting, social intervention programmes and policy planning.
“It is very important to emphasize that the current exercise of linking NIN to SIM(s) is for the common good of all Nigerians, as it has far-reaching benefits. Apart from enhancing our general safety, this will help in such vital exercises like National Budgeting, Policy Planning, Social Intervention programmes and many more,” the communiqué reads in part.
The commission criticised the media coverage of the exercise stating that it was erroneously founded on the assumption that one human subscriber has just one SIM and did not take into account the ‘advent of social media and App-driven digital environment’.
They stated that a survey recently conducted in Nigeria proved there was more than one SIMs for every human and one human subscriber could own up to five SIMs.
“The attention of the NCC has been drawn to numerous publications in both print and electronic media regarding the unfounded fears of mass disconnection of telephone subscribers as a result of the ongoing linkage of SIM Registration Records with the National Identity Number (NIN),” they stated.
“Most of these publications are based on the erroneous assumption that for every network or SIM connection, there is one unique human subscriber. However, with the advent of social media and App-driven digital environment, network subscription went beyond human subscribers to include machines like PoS, Routers, Wi-Fi devices, electricity meters, CCTV, tracking devices etc.”