The federal government has approved the extension of the deadline for National Identity Number (NIN)-Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) data verification to June 30, 2021.
The extension was as a result of the virtual meeting chaired by the minister of communications and digital economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, and attended by following officials- chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Adeolu Akande; the executive vice chairman/CEO of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Dambatta, and the director-general/CEO of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Engr. Aliyu Azeez.
The postponement of the deadline was also based on the request by stakeholders for an extension till June 30, 2021 in order to make it easier for all citizens and legal residents to register.
Significant progress has been made in the NIN-SIM verification process. For example, almost 54 million people have obtained their NIN and this can translate to up to 190 million mobile numbers, since empirical evidence suggests that each unique NIN maps to three to four phone lines.
The much-awaited Android enrolment system is now ready for deployment and this has the potential to significantly accelerate the speed and ease of enrolments.
Furthermore, the telecom providers and other enrolment agents have also opened several centres across the country to make it easier for eligible citizens and residents to obtain and link their NINs.
It is noteworthy that Sections 27 and 29 of the National Identity Management Commission Act 2007 provides for the mandatory use of NIN for accessing several government services. This is similar to the use of Social Security Number and National Insurance Number for accessing services in the United States of America and the United Kingdom respectively.
About a month ago, the federal government announced the extension of the deadline for Nigerians to link their National Identification Numbers (NIN) to their Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) to May 6, 2021.
The approval to extend the period of the NIN-SIM linkage to May 6 was given at the meeting of the Ministerial Task Force on NIN-SIM data linkage and key stakeholders held on Thursday in Abuja.