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National Identification Number

Is being Nigerian now synonymous with suffering?

On Wednesday, December 16th, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami through the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) gave telecommunication companies (TelCos) – MTN, Glo, Airtel, 9Mobile and others – two weeks to block at least 20 million unique subscribers who are not registered with National Identity Numbers (NINs).

Issuing a 2-week ultimatum is very unreasonable especially when there is a second wave of COVID-19. The ICT sector, one of the few sectors contributing to GDP during a recession, will be badly hit if at least 20 million people get cut off. Let’s not forget those that have registered for years and have still not collected their identity cards.

This thing is simple – use the existing biometric registration to assign NINs and notify citizens. TelCos should also have a process to remotely connect NIN to active numbers.

Please make life easy for us biko.

Paradigm Initiative & Digital Rights Lawyers Initiative instituted a suit in Lagos on Thursday, December 17th, to enforce the fundamental human right to freedom of expression of TelCo customers.

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