Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has reacted to the viral link being circulated on social media and other websites which offers to unblock subscriber identity module (SIM) cards that are not linked to National Identification Number (NIN).
The Federal Government had last week, directed telecommunication companies to bar outgoing calls on all SIMs that are yet to be linked with the NIN. About 72 million unlinked SIM cards have been affected by the NIN-SIM linkage policy.
On Monday, the NCC maintained that unlinked SIMs will not be unbarred by the service providers until they are linked with the NIN
“This information has become necessary in view of a viral web link (https://bit.ly/NCC-Sim-Unbar-Gov-Ng) being circulated on social media and on some websites.
“The link and accompanying narrative represent patent misinformation and disinformation certainly designed to mislead the general public about the SIM cards that are barred from making calls, due to non-linkage with NIN at the set deadline,” the commission said in a statement signed by its public affairs director, Ikechukwu Adinde.
It added that: “The misleading, viral message mischievously displays NCC logo and ostensibly promises members of the public that, by clicking the web link and following further instructions in that regard, subscribers with barred SIM cards can unbar such SIMs across mobile networks without a valid NIN.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the NCC wishes to state categorically that it never issued such statement, directing subscribers or indicating that subscribers can unbar their SIM without a NIN. As such, the originators and peddlers of the spurious message were out to mischievously mislead unsuspecting members of public. Therefore, their message should be disregarded.
“The NCC is the national regulatory authority for telecommunications in Nigeria, and it is co-driving the process of the NIN-SIM linkage with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) as directed by the Federal Government.
The Commission will not, under any circumstance, act contrary to Federal Government’s directive to MNOs to bar SIMs cards not linked to NINs at the expiration of the last deadline given for the NIN-SIM linkage exercise.”