Cross-Sections of Participants at the Interactive 3rd Edition of NCC Telecoms Consumer Town Hall on Radio in Abuja, FCT

Special Report: NCC, stakeholders’ conversations on benefits of NIN-SIM integration at 3rd TCTHR

*The Nigerian Communications Commission Friday, October 15 holds the third interactive Telecoms Consumer Town Hall on Radio (TCTHR), aired on Human Rights Radio 101.1 FM (Brekete Family), broadcasting from Abuja, where the telecoms sector regulator and other stakeholders restate benefits of the ongoing NIN-SIM integration in the country, ahead of the October 31 deadline

Gbenga Kayode | ConsumerConnect

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and other key stakeholders in the national identity administration, including the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) and telecommunications operators (Telcos), have re-emphasised the ultimate importance of telecoms consumers’ integrating their National Identification Numbers (NINs) with the Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards in the country.

ConsumerConnect exclusively reports the telecoms regulatory Commission and other stakeholders said this in the morning Friday, October 15, 2021, at the third edition of the interactive Telecoms Consumer Town Hall on Radio (TCTHR), aired on the Human Rights Radio 101.1 FM, broadcasting live from Abuja, FCT.

The well-attended programme, which attracted both physical and virtual participants, via Facebook and YouTube channels respectively, focused on ‘the Benefits of NIN-SIM Integration’ in Nigeria.

RELATED: NCC Sensitises Telecoms Consumers On NIN-SIM Integration Before Oct 31 Deadline

According to the regulator, the consumer-oriented programme is a continuation of the NCC’s efforts at sensitising more Nigerians on the benefits of the National Identification Numbers (NINs) and Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) Cards integration in Nigeria.

This publication had reported the Commission earlier informed the Nigerian telecoms consumers, that the new deadline for the integration of their NINs with SIM cards is fixed for Sunday, October 31, 2021.

The NCC, in conjunction with NIMC, organised the interactive and well-attended programme, hosted by the Brekete Family, a reality Radio and TV talk magazine platform from the Abuja studios.

Why NIN-SIM integration in Nigeria?

In his opening address on the programme, Mr. Efosa Idehen, Director of Consumer Affairs Bureau (CAB) of NCC, disclosed the essence of the Telecoms Consumer Town Hall on Radio is further enlighten the subscribers in particular and Nigerians in general on how adoption of the modern digital technologies could significantly enhance national security, improve service delivery, and enhance citizens’ access to government services.

RELATED: No Going Back On NIN-SIM Integration As Criminals ‘Feel The Heat’ ─Minister

The Commission’s CAB Director, who emphasised the importance of telecommunications to modern living, described the sector as a crucial service to humanity.

Mr. Efosa Idehen, Director of Consumer Affairs Bureau at NCC (right), and other representatives of the Commission at 3rd TCTHR 

While urging all Nigerian consumers to work with the NCC, NIMC, and other stakeholders towards ensuring that the ongoing NIN-SIM integration exercise is successful explained the rationale for the efforts.

Idehen stated that in line with the Federal Government policy instrument, both NIMC and NCC are directly involved in the NIN-SIM integration exercise in the country.

Roles of NCC, NIMC and telecoms operators

The NCC Director of Consumer Affairs Bureau also explained that the National Identity Management Commission basically issues NINs to Nigerians whereas the NCC oversees the issuance of SIM cards to telecoms subscribers.

In respect of the need for individual subscribers to have separate SIMs with distinct identities, and the possibility of two subscribers having just a SIM, the Idehen clarified this scenario is “impossible”.

RELATED NIN Registration: NIMC Launches Mobile App For Enrollment, Authentication

According to him, the regulation states that only a telecoms subscriber is entitled to own a specific SIM card, unless such a SIM card is probably cloned (a near copy of SIM card).

In this regard, Idehen stated that the essence of the current NIN-SIM integration exercise is primarily to ascertain the “actual identity” of a subscriber who gets and uses a SIM card, for proper identification and traceability when there are issues thereof.

The Director of Consumer Affairs Bureau further noted the NCC hitherto had a Town Hall meeting with several participants physically present.

However, with the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the country, the Commission has adjusted the consumer outreach programme to hold on Radio in order to reach out to as many people as possible.

Implications of using other consumers’ SIM cards

The Commission and other stakeholders, especially representatives of the telecoms firms also warned Nigerians against allowing other people to use their SIM cards, stating that there are far-reaching implications of doing in regard to security matters and other eventualities in the country.

RELATED NIN-SIM Integration: How To Link Other Phone Numbers With NIMC Mobile App

In his remarks, Dr. Omoniyi Ibietan, Deputy Director Public Affairs of NCC, who represented Dr. Okechukwu Adinde at the forum, expressed appreciation to all live participants, the listeners and viewers via the social media platforms.

The Brekete Family Radio and TV show platform … on Friday, in Abuja

He urged Nigerians to always endeavour to visit the Commission’s Web site to know about the telecoms regulator’s activities in the country’s economy.

Whither the authorities should extend October 31 deadline?

While Mr. Kayode Adegoke, Head of Corporate Communications at NIMC and key participant in the interactive forum, restated the need for all telecoms subscribers to ensure that they integrate their NINs with SIM cards by the deadline, the host of the forum (Brekete Family), on behalf of all Nigerian consumers, however, said that “this month (October) don already end….”

Mr. Kayode Adegoke, Head of Corporate Communications, NIMC (holding a microphone)

READ ALSO: Stakeholders Highlight Role Of Telecoms Firms In Identity Management, Nigeria Digital Economy

The anchor man, who commended the Brekete Family Crew members, also thanked all the participants, and stated on behalf of all Nigerian telecoms subscribers, that the human rights media group appealed to the Nigerian Government for a “possible extension” of the October 31, 2021, deadline for the NIN-SIM integration in the West African country.

Telecoms consumers can enjoy watching details of the 3rd edition of the NCC Telecoms Consumer Town Hall on Radio at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJqHpeLRtjE.

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