The Federal Government on Friday disclosed that NIN-SIM linkage has been extended to May 6, 2021.
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami in a statement released on Friday noted that the request for the extension was presented to President Muhammadu Buhari and he endorsed it.
Pantami who chaired the meeting of the Ministerial Task Force on the NIN-SIM data linkage on Thursday in Abuja according to the statement jointly signed by Dr Ikechukwu Adinde of NCC and Kayode Adegoke of NIMC said the current number of monthly enrolment has increased significantly to about 2.6 million registrations.
“The meeting took place on Thursday, April 1, 2021 and an approval was given to extend the period of the NIN-SIM linkage to the 6th of May, 2021. The request for the extension was presented to President Muhammadu Buhari and he endorsed it”, the statement said.
It added that over 51 million Nigerians have been assigned NIN.
It said there were many people who have enrolled and are in the process of being assigned NINs.
It said: “With each individual having an average of 3 to 4 SIMs, the total number of SIMs tied to NINs would close to the total number of registered SIMs in the country.”
There has also been a remarkable increase in the number of enrolment centres across the country with about 3,800 centres available for enrolment, according to the statement.
There are also many more new centres in the pipeline, it added.
“The Chairman of the EFCC addressed the meeting and stated that the NIN-SIM linkage would support the Federal Government in checkmating the activities of fraudsters and cybercriminals. The Honourable Minister noted the importance of obtaining feedback from all stakeholders in order to ensure that the NIN-SIM linkage process is one that cannot easily be compromised,” the statement said.
The meeting was attended by key stakeholders, including the EVC/CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), DG/CEO of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), DG/CEO of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Representative of the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and the Chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON).
Others included the NCC Executive Commissioners Technical Services and Stakeholder Management, MD/CEOs of MTN, Airtel, EMTS (9Mobile), NTEL, Spectranet and SMILE, as well as the COO of Glo.
In a related development, Pantami, has denied saying that Nigerians who do not obtain their National Identification Numbers (NIN) could risk a 14-year jail term.
Touchaheart blog had reported that Pantami, during the weekly ministerial briefing organized by the Presidential Media Team, at Aso Rock, Abuja, on Thursday, warned that failure to obtain the NIN could lead to seven or 14 years imprisonment as stipulated by the Nigerian Constitution.