…Focus now on remote, hard-to-reach areas, schools, health centres
The Federal Government has, again, approved the extension of the deadline for National Identity Number (NIN)-Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) data verification to October 31, 2021.
The decision to extend the deadline was made following a request by stakeholders to accommodate registration in hard-to-reach remote areas, foreigners and diplomatic missions, diaspora and address low enrolments in schools and hospitals, as evidenced by enrolment statistics.
A statement co-signed by the director, public affairs, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde), and the head, corporate communication, National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Mr. Kayode Adegoke, said the decision also followed a review of the exercise which indicated significant progress, hence the need to consolidate the gains of the enrolment and NIN-SIM verification process across the country.
It would be recalled that government gave the deadline of the NIN-SIM verification as July 26, 2021. The statement, however, said that as at July 24, 2021, there were over 5,500 enrolment systems within and outside the country, adding this would significantly ease the NIN enrolment process and subsequent linkage of NIN to SIM.
The government has approved the extension as part of efforts to make it easier for its citizens within and outside the country, and legal residents to obtain the NIN and it is important to take advantage of the extension, the statement said.
It added: The NIN-SIM linkage also makes it easier for the security agencies to carry out their statutory duties and the relevant parastatals under the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy are supporting them as required.
There are now a total of 59.8 million unique NIN enrolments, with average of 3 to 4 SIMs per NIN. With the great number of enrolment centres within and outside the country, and many more coming up, every citizen, legal residents, and Nigerian citizens living in diaspora should be able to obtain their NINs.
According to the statement, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, on behalf of the government, commended the Kano State government and other states that have made NINs a key requirement for school enrolments and access to other important services.
He further said government was also excited at the news that the use of NIN in the process of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) exam significantly reduced the challenge of exam malpractice, even as he expressed government’s appreciation to Nigerians for their patience and compliance with the FG’s directive on the NIN-SIM registration exercise.
Similarly, the executive vice chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, and the director-general of NIMC, Engr. Aliyu Azeez, urged citizens and legal residents to make sure they use the opportunity to complete the process of enrolment and verification before the October 31 deadline.