FG lifts ban on registration of new SIM cards

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*Pantami

The federal government on Thursday lifted the ban on registration of new Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards.

The effective date for implementation, the government said, is Monday, April 19, 2021.

The development is contained in revised National Digital Identity Policy for SIM Card Registration approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

In a statement signed by Dr Femi Adeluyi, technical assistant to the minister of communications and digital economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami on Thursday, the government said activation of new SIM registration with mandatory National Identification Number (NIN) had been approved.

The statement reads in part: “The implementation of the Policy will commence on Monday, 19th of April 2021.

“The issuance of New SIMs and other suspended activities will resume on the same date, as long as verification is done and the guidelines are fully adhered to.

“The Minister has also directed NCC and NIMC to ensure that the provisions of the Policy are strictly followed by all operators and subscribers.

“The Policy includes Guidelines on New SIM Acquisition and Activation, SIM Replacement, New SIM Activation for Corporates and Internet-of-Things/Machine-to-Machine (IoT/M2M), amongst others.

“The possession of a National Identity number will be a prerequisite for each of these categories. For the Corporate registration, institutions will be required to appoint a Telecoms Master (at the minimum of an Executive Management level) to provide the operational Primary NIN representation.

“The Telecoms Master will also be responsible for ensuring that the users provide their NINs to serve as a Secondary NIN.

“For IoT/M2M activations, SIM security protocols would be implemented on the SIM profile to ensure that SIMs can only be used for point to point data services specific to the URL they are working with. All other services will be barred.”

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