The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) is set to implement full network barring on all phone lines of telecommunication providers like MTN, Airtel, Globacom, and others for which the subscribers have not linked or verified their national identity numbers (NIN).
MTN Nigeria made this announcement on the Nigerian Exchange Limited website on December 18, 2023.
According to the statement, NCC has instructed the telecom provider to block phone lines for which subscribers have not submitted their NINs by February 28, 2024.
“Concerning NINs that have been submitted but not verified, such lines are to be barred on or before 29 March 2024, where five or more lines are linked to an unverified NIN. Similarly, where less than five lines are linked to an unverified NIN, such lines are to be barred on or before 15 April 2024,” it said.
Nevertheless, affected subscribers must undergo the biometric and biodata process before their lines can be unbarred.
This latest development follows NCC’s announcement in April 2022, which barred outgoing calls on unlinked lines. until the affected subscribers comply with the directive.
The action, which left many affected Nigerians disorganised, was part of the government’s efforts to fight insecurity in the country.
However, MTN in its recent statement said “We are further engaging the affected subscribers through all our channels to encourage them to submit their NINs for verification. As part of these efforts, we are enhancing the capacity of our various service outlets to make the process smoother and more efficient. We are committed to ensuring that our subscribers comply with the NCC directive and will continue to work with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to accelerate the NIN verification process.”
“We appreciate the effort being made by the Federal Government to implement a reliable and sustainable National Identity Management system, which is a crucial enabler for national and economic development. Therefore, as a law-abiding corporate citizen and in line with our operating licence requirements, we are committed to complying with the industry-wide directive from the NCC and will,” it said.