THE Federal Government extended the National Identification Number (NIN) and Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) integration exercise to October 31.
Director of Public Affairs at the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) Ikechukwu Adinde, in a statement, revealed that the decision to extend the deadline was to carry out registration in “hard-to-reach remote areas, foreigners and diplomatic missions, and Nigerians in the diaspora.”
“The decision also followed a review of the progress 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.
“As of July 24, 2021, there are over 5,500 enrolment systems within and outside the country and this would significantly ease the NIN enrolment process and subsequent linkage of NIN to SIM,” a section of the statement read.
The initial deadline was moved from the previous date of July 26, 2021.
“The administration of His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, 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 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.”
The statement said there were now a total of 59.8 million unique NIN enrolments, with an average of three to four SIMs per NIN.
It was also noted that the use of NIN in the process of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) exam significantly reduced instances of exam malpractice.
The NCC boss Umar Garba Dambatta and the director-general and CEO of the National Identity Management Commission Aliyu Azeez urged citizens and legal residents to ensure they used the opportunity to complete the process of enrolment and verification before the October 31st deadline.
Amos Abba is a journalist with the International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR, who believes that courageous investigative reporting is the key to social justice and accountability in the society.