The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has cleared the air on speculations of impending mass disconnection of telephone subscribers.
The NCC said the speculations arose as a result of numerous publications in both the print and electronic media on the ongoing linkage of SIM registration records with the National Identity Number, NIN.
NCC Director, Public Affairs, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, made the clarification in a statement he issued late Wednesday in Abuja.
“Most of these publications are based on the erroneous assumption that for every network or SIM connection, there is one unique human subscriber.
“However, with the advent of social media and App-driven digital environment, network subscription went beyond human subscribers to include machines like PoS, Routers, WiFi devices, electricity meters, CCTV, tracking devices, etc.,” he said.
Mr Adinde recalled that a recent survey conducted in Nigeria showed that there were approximately four to five SIMs to every human subscriber.
“This explains the basis of allowing the linkage of up to seven SIMs to one unique NIN in the recently launched Federal Government Portal.
“Thus, if there are 43 million Nigerians with NINs, this could account for about 172 million SIMs already linked to NINs.
“It is very important to emphasise that the current exercise of linking NIN to SIMs is for the common good of all Nigerians, as it has far reaching benefits.
“Apart from enhancing our general safety, this will help in such vital exercises like national budgeting, policy planning, social intervention programmes and many more, the statement said.
The Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, had said that the Federal Government would continue to review the exercise in the light of experiences, to ensure its smooth implementation.