Nigeria Telecommunications Companies have been licensed by the Nigerian Identity Management Commission (NIMC) as NIN Agents in Nigeria to carry out NIN registration for Nigerians who do not have National Identity Numbers (NIN).
What this implies is that Telecommunication copies like MTN, Glo, Airtel, and 9Mobile can conduct enrolment of all persons including legal residents into the National Identity Database (NIDB) on behalf of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).
This development will help to reduce the huge number of people that gather daily at various NIMC offices in Nigeria, which if not closely checked, can result in a huge spread of the Covid-19 disease.
According to a report from Punch Nigeria, this announcement was made known by Aliyu Aziz who is the Director-General of National Identity Management Commission NIMC, while he was responding to an inquiry with respect to measures taken by NIMC to address the complaints made by citizens and the crowds at their various offices across the country.
Kindly note that all SIMs that have not been registered or linked to their NIN on the network of telecommunications companies would be blocked by February 9, 2021.
However, many Nigerians and organizations are pleading for an extension of the deadline or outright suspension of the NIN registration process due to the large crowds who had yet to have their NINs.
It can be recalled, that the chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecommunication Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) and member of the National Task Force on National Identification Number and SIM Registration, Gbenga Adebayo, stated last month, that more NIN enrolment outlets in Nigeria will enable Nigerians to comply with the Federal Government’s directive on SIM-NIN linking.
The ALTON chairman attributed the large crowds at the NIMC offices nationwide is as a result of the lackadaisical attitude of most Nigerians because the majority of people had the opportunity to easily do this registration without waiting to this time.
He said, “Before now, it has been apathy on the part of citizens to visit the enrolment center of NIMC. I must say that until the time when NIN became a condition for Bank Verification Number, the number of uptake on NIN enrolment was quite low. And it all boils down to our attitude of low response or poor response as a people in general.
“NIMC has been on it for eight years but people have failed to visit those centers to enroll. Until there is a significant mandate that people need to do it before certain things happen, you don’t see people visiting those NIMC centers.”