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Telcos begin SIM activation as more lines get NIN linkage

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SIM Card

• Maximise digital market, ICAN urges govt
• NCC, NIGCOMSAT sign pact for 5G deployment

Two weeks after the Federal Government lifted the ban on registration and activation of Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards, telecoms operators have commenced sale of new and reactivation of old lines.

The Guardian had, last week, reported the challenges customers were encountering following the telcos’ wait on the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for new guidelines on the SIM project.

Checks yesterday showed that operators had commenced registration of new SIMs and reactivation of old ones, albeit slowly.

A visit to MTN office at Fatai Atere, Oshodi, 9mobile office, Cele Express and Globacom office, Airport Road, Ikeja confirmed the development.

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There was multitude at the centres waiting to retrieve their lines and register for the National Identification Number (NIN).

9mobile, in a statement, said affirmed that phone line activation had begun in all its experiences centres across the federation.

The Chief Commercial Officer, Stjepan Udovicic, said the decision was consistent with the firm’s disposition to the welfare of customers.

Also, a radio jingle from MTN yesterday confirmed it had begun activation of SIMs.

An official said the exercise would be more effective in the course of the week.

Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, has reiterated government’s commitment to continually take decisions aimed at easing the pains of the citizens with regard to NIN and SIM registration.

He was referring to the latest June 30 extension date for SIM-NIN linkage in the country.

Equally reacting to the elongation, President of the National Association of Telecoms Subscribers of Nigeria (NATCOMs), Chief Deolu Ogunbanjo, stated: “We are taking the development with mixed feelings. First, we thank him. Recall that June 30 is what we have been canvassing.”

BESIDES, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) has urged the Federal Government to take advantage of the multi-billion dollar revenue drive in the non-oil sector for the revival of the economy.

It implored the current administration to look beyond oil in bailing the country out of the prevailing financial crisis.

Chairman, Kano/Jigawa District of the association, Dr. Abubakar Umar Faruq, made the appeal during a virtual meeting with the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF) to officially present recommendations on “Initiatives for Broadening the Nigeria’s Non-oil Revenue Base”, an outcome of a research work funded by office of the AGF.

While suggesting enhancing Nigeria’s tax drive strategy through “Digital Transactions, Mining Exploration and Blue Economy Activities “, he regretted that the nation was losing billions of dollars to the three virgin areas.

ALSO yesterday, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and the Nigerian Communications Satellite (NIGCOMSAT) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to facilitate the release of contiguous bandwidth in one of the most suitable Frequency Spectrum bands for early deployment of Fifth Generation Network (5G) services in Nigeria.

Speaking at the ceremony in Abuja, NCC’s Executive Vice Chairman, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, pointed out that the C-band was most suitable for swift deployment of 5G services taking into consideration availability of device ecosystem with 60 to 70 per cent of global commercial 5G network deployment currently in the band.

In her remarks, NIGCOMSAT chief executive, Abimbola Alale, lauded the critical stakeholders that facilitated the deal.

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