The Federal Government has said its directive on mandatory use of the National Identification Number (NIN) will take effect on January 1, 2019.
Ahead of the deadline, the Director-General of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Engr. Aliyu Aziz held wide consultations with the leadership of mobile network operators in the country.
In a statement Tuesday, Engr. Aliyu Aziz said he considered the meeting with the Association of Licensed Telecom Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) led by its Chairman, Engr. Gbenga Adebayo to be central in the implementation of the recently launched Digital Identity Ecosystem spearheaded by NIMC given the Association’s members’ customers – the mobile subscribers – who currently run into nearly 150 million.
As of September 2018, the telecom regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), stated that there were 143 million mobile phone subscriptions or active connected lines in Nigeria.
Speaking further on the meeting with ALTON, he said the MNOs in Nigeria “are already undertaking data capture subscribers’ information including biometrics for any SIM to be active.”
The January 1 deadline has been considered as unrealistic in certain quarters given that many Nigerians are still to register with the NIMC, let alone receive an identification number.