The Federal Government has again announced an extension of the deadline for integration of Subscriber Identification Modules (SIM) to the National Identification Number (NIN) by another four weeks.
The new date is now May 6, 2021.
This extension comes up just in time as its earlier scheduled deadline fast approaches.
The process had an initial deadline of January 19 but was moved to February 9 and then later April 6.
According to the Minister of Communications, Dr Isa Pantami, he revealed in a statement on Friday that the request for the extension was presented to President Buhari and he endorsed it.
The Minister of Communications also revealed at a meeting of the Ministerial Task Force on the NIN-SIM linkage on Thursday that the number of monthly enrolments had increased to about 2.6 million.
A statement issued at the end of the meeting read in part, “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 Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission addressed the meeting and stated that the NIN-SIM linkage would support the Federal Government in checkmating the activities of fraudsters and cybercriminals.”
The meeting had in attendance key stakeholders including the NIMC, Nigerian Communications Commission, National Information Technology Development Agency, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Nigeria Immigration Service and the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria.
Others also present at the meeting include the managing directors of MTN, Airtel, EMTS (9Mobile), NTEL, Spectranet and SMILE, as well as the chief operating officer of Glo.
On the update of the registration process, the statement revealed that over 51 million people had been assigned NINs.
The statement further reads, “With each individual having an average of three to four 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 enrollments,” it stated.
As regards concerns of people having to gather in numbers at the various NIMC centres to enrol for NIN given the prevalent COVID-19 wave, the NIMC management said it has put in place measure to have more enrolment centres across the country.