The Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami as assured that there are no unregistered sim cards on mobile networks after the September 2019 deactivation. This is sequel to the resolution reached on the floor of the red chamber on Wednesday following the consideration of a motion on the spate of growing insecurity in Nigeria.
In a statement by the Minister’s Technical Assistant (Information Technology) Dr ‘Femi Adeluyi, Dr Pantami awaits the official while lauding the lawmakers for their concern and support towards improving national security.
Recall that the first action after the Minister’s appointment was to issue a directive that no improperly registered subscriber identification module (SIM) be allowed to remain on our networks. Based on the report submitted by the regulator (Nigerian Communications Commission) on the 26th of September 2019, there is currently no improperly registered SIM on our networks. In the event of evidence to the contrary, the Minister will sanction any individual or institution found wanting.
Furthermore, Dr Pantami wrote to all security agencies on the 14th of October 2019 asking them to collaborate with the Ministry by contacting us whenever a crime has been aided and abetted through the use of telecommunication devices. No request by security agencies for assistance in the identification of owners of SIMs used for crime has gone untreated in his office.
The Minister also submitted a detailed memorandum to the Senate Ad-hoc Committee on Nigerian Security Challenges on the 12th of February 2020. It contained details on policies developed by the Ministry to enhance security.
In a similar vein, the Minister has directed the NCC to ensure that they put modalities in place to tie the National Identify Number (NIN) to SIMs, as well as see to it that no unregistered SIMs are sold. He has also directed the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to significantly scale up the number of monthly NIN registrations. Moreover, Dr Pantami recently presented a Draft National Policy on Digital Identity for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) which took place on the 11th of November, 2020.
The memo was approved and will support in the provision of Digital IDs for Nigerians, thus assisting in the implementation of the Policy to tie NINs to SIMs.
The Minister however assured the lawmakers and Nigerians that the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy is committed to using technology to support the growth of our economy and the security of our nation. To this end, we look forward to collaborating with the Senate and security agencies in this regard.