Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, has warned Nigerians that they risk going to jail for seven to 14 years for refusing to enroll for the NIN (National Identification Number); this even as the deadline to integrate their NINs with their phone numbers draw near ( April 6, 2021).
The deadline for all Nigerians The deadline was previously given as February 9, 2021 from previous deadlines of December 30, 2020 and January 19, 2021, respectively.
Addressing the press at the weekly media briefing at the State House in Abuja, Pantami also announced that 51 million citizens have so far been enrolled for NIN as of March 31, 2021.
“Based on the requirement by law, each and every citizen and legal resident must obtain his/her National Identification Number (NIN), which is being coordinated by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC),” the minister said. “It’s a requirement by law but many citizens ignore it.
“No country will be successful in education, health, budget planning or national planning without a database of its citizens in place.
“What I inherited in the database was less than 20 per cent of our population. But we want to ensure that before we leave office we would look at the database and be proud of our country,’’ he added.
According to the minister, only 150 million out of the 189 million mobile phone subscribers have successfully completed their NIN linkage, while the rest have problems of improper registration.
The minister stated that while obtaining a SIM card may be optional, NIN is mandatory, noting that a lot of transactions in the country should not be carried out without NIN.