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Members of the House of Representatives have called for 10 weeks extension of Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card registration with the National Identification Number (NIN) to allow Nigerians enough time to participate.
Dr Isa Patami, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, had stated that any telecom subscriber who failed to submit NIN to its network provider within two weeks would be blocked from Dec 31.
Rep Ndudi Elumelu (PDP-Delta) during plenary, moved the motion on the need for the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) to give Nigerians reasonable time to submit their NIN for SIM registration.
Elumelu, who is also the minority leader of the House of Reps, said that the two weeks deadline given by the NCC for all Nigerians to register would bring untold hardship.
He said that though the idea of SIM registration with NIN was a noble and laudable exercise, the two weeks deadline would not augur well.
Elumelu said that the timing was wrong because Nigerians had not been properly sensitized, as only a few educated persons who bothered to read the dailies might have heard about such instructions.
“Therefore, trying to enforce this policy in a period where most Nigerians are gearing up for Christmas festivities may lead to stampede in the process of rushing to get registered,’’ he said.
This, according to him, can lead to unnecessary death and injuries and if the NCC is allowed to carry out this directive, it will bring untold hardship.
According to Elumelu, millions of subscribers would be disconnected this yuletide which could cause more pains, hence, the need to halt the plan.
He said that if the NCC was not urgently called to halt its plans, there could also be unnecessary panic in the country, saying that it could lead to the exploitation of vulnerable Nigerians.