The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has verified that telecom operators have blocked all Subscriber Identification Modules (SIMs) that have not been linked to their owners’ National Identity Numbers (NINs).

Last week, the Commission authorized telecom operators to block approximately 11.2 million lines whose owners had not linked them with their National Identity Numbers (NINs).

NCC directive was issued after the expiration of the months-long ultimatum given last year to telecom customers, requiring them to link their SIMs with their NINs before February 28.

The Commission’s Spokesman, Reuben Mouka, speaking on Monday, said those subscribers disconnected were not serious about their NIN- SIM linkage.

Mouka disclosed this during a Channels Television interview on Monday.

He noted that the primary objective of the policy is to boost security and national planning.

“It will be difficult to place a hand on the actual number of phone lines that have been barred. But take it that everybody who has not submitted NIN to service providers has been barred.

“The service providers started barring subscribers many days before the deadline.

“We are expecting to do an audit on that before the end of the week because the service providers ought to send in data of the subscribers barred.

“The process is to have an identity attached to a SIM. One of the benefits of SIM registration is to have a digital identity. The Nigerian government is very serious about having NIN as managed by NIMC. The idea is to ensure that we have those together. Some objectives, if you remember, are security and national planning. Also includes Know your customer’s details,” he said.

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