The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has officially informed telecoms consumers, whose Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards are barred from making calls, that affected SIMs will not be unbarred by the service providers until they are linked with the National Identification Numbers (NINs) of the SIM holders.
According to the Commission in a press statement signed by its head of public affairs department, Ikechukwu Adinde, this information has become necessary in view of a viral web link (https://bit.ly/NCC-Sim-Unbar-Gov-Ng) being circulated on social media and on some websites to offer quick fix for barred subscribers.
NCC said that the link and accompanying narrative represent patent misinformation and disinformation certainly designed to mislead the general public about the SIM cards that are barred from making calls, due to non-linkage with NIN at the set deadline.
“The misleading, viral message mischievously displays NCC logo and ostensibly promises members of the public that, by clicking the web link and following further instructions in that regard, subscribers with barred SIM cards can unbar such SIMs across mobile networks without a valid NIN,” the statement read.
For the avoidance of doubt, the NCC stated categorically that it never issued such statement, directing subscribers or indicating that subscribers can unbar their SIM without a NIN.
“As such, the originators and peddlers of the spurious message were out to mischievously mislead unsuspecting members of public. Therefore, their message should be disregarded,” NCC added.
The NCC is the national regulatory authority for telecommunications in Nigeria, and it is co-driving the process of the NIN-SIM linkage with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) as directed by the Federal Government.
The Commission warned that it would not, under any circumstance, act contrary to Federal Government’s directive to MNOs to bar SIMs cards not linked to NINs at the expiration of the last deadline given for the NIN-SIM linkage exercise.