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Just in: Contempt proceeding looms as FG extends NIN-SIM Linkage by One Month

Strong indications suggestive of imminent contempt of court proceeding are emerging following the only one month extension of NIN-SIM data linkage deadline by the Federal Government.
Recall that a statement issued today by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and the NIMC said the meeting of the Ministerial Task Force on the NIN-SIM data linkage chaired by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isah Pantami only extended the period by one month without recourse to the court ruling which extended it by two months.
Business Hilights recalls that former Vice President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Barr. Monday Onyekachi Ubani had approached a Federal High Court on the matter and secured a ruling that extended the deadline by two months.
In a telephone interview today, Friday April 2, 2021, Barr Ubani vowed to initiate a contempt proceeding against the parties that voided the pronouncement of a competent court of jurisdiction on the matter.
The NCC/NIMC statement disclosed further that the meeting was attended by key stakeholders, including the EVC/CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), DG/CEO of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), DG/CEO of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Representative of the Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and the Chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON). Others included the NCC Executive Commissioners Technical Services and Stakeholder Management, MD/CEOs of MTN, Airtel, EMTS (9Mobile), NTEL, Spectranet and SMILE, as well as the COO of Glo.
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.
Based on the updates of the NIN-registration process, over 51 million people have been assigned NINs. There are many people, who have enrolled and are in the process of being assigned NINs. With each individual having an average of 3 to 4 SIMs, the total number of SIMs tied to NINs would be close to the total number of registered SIMs in the country.
The current number of monthly enrolments has increased significantly to about 2.6 million registrations. There has also been a remarkable increase in the number of enrolment centres across the country with about 3,800 centres available for enrolments. There are also many more new centres in the pipeline.
The Chairman of the EFCC addressed the meeting and stated that the NIN-SIM linkage would support the Federal Government in checkmating the activities of fraudsters and cybercriminals.
The Honourable Minister noted the importance of obtaining feedback from all stakeholders in order to ensure that the NIN-SIM linkage process is one that cannot easily be compromised.
Dr. Pantami wishes to thank Nigerians for their patience and compliance with the Federal Government’s directive on the NIN-SIM registration exercise. He reiterated government’s commitment to continually taking decisions aimed at easing the pains of the citizens with regard to issues related to NIN and SIM registration.