MTN’s race against time: Nigeria extends deadline, but not by much

Published: 22/Dec/2020
Source: Business Insider (Johannesburg)

By Ntando Thukwana

MTN in Nigeria now has a couple more weeks to update and link the SIM cards of up to 30 million of its users with their ID numbers, after the telecoms regulator extended the deadline for the registration process.

The Nigerian Communications Commission previously gave mobile operators a tight deadline of 31 December – and threatened to cut off users who aren’t verified, and to strip mobile companies of their licences if they don’t comply.

The new deadline is 9 February for subscribers without a NIN (National Identification Number) number and 19 January for users with a NIN. Mobile operators campaigned for a six-month extension.

Bloomberg reports that while Nigeria has 196 million active numbers, only between 40 million to 60 million Nigerians have identity numbers. MTN recently received a licence to register Nigerians on the NIN database, which will give them identity numbers as part of the process.

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Themes: ID Documents and Passports
Regions: Nigeria
Year: 2020