FG on Thursday lifted ban on old sim cards replacement.

OnyxNews Nigeria reports that the federal government of Nigeria has suspended its earlier directive which banned the registration and replacement of old sim cards.

This was made public on Thursday, 31st December in a statement by the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON).

The statement signed by the ALTON Chairman, Engr Gbenga Adebayo, and its Publicity Secretary, Mr. Damian Udeh, noted however that the replacement and activation of old Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards can only be done on the condition that the person must have enrolled and obtained the National Identification Number (NIN).

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The statement reads: “Further to engagements with government on the matter, we are pleased to report that our members have been granted permission to carry out SIM replacement upon verification of the customer’s NIN.

“In this regard, our members are working with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to ensure seamless system connectivity for verification of NINs.”

“We note the challenges experienced by customers seeking to replace or upgrade their SIM cards following the suspension of sale and activation of SIM cards by the government which also affected SIM replacement.

“We empathize with people who have been unable to reactivate their phone lines as a result of the suspension.

We, therefore, seek the continued patience and understanding of our esteemed subscribers as we work with all stakeholders towards speedy resolution of issues affecting SIM Registration/Swap and activation. We assure you of restoring normal services in a seamless and effective manner as soon as possible,” the statement according to This Day reads.

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) had earlier in December 2020, directed all telecommunications companies to suspend the registration of sim cards across the federation.

The NCC made the announcement in a statement by its director of publicity, Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde.

The statement dated 9th December, 2020 said the commission gave the directive in line with the federal government’s policy of reviewing the registry of registrants and ensuring that companies comply with the rules and regulations.

The suspension order was expected to subsist till the completion of the audit of the Subscriber Registration Database, which seeks to achieve global standards and quality in the issuance of SIM Cards but has now been suspended conditionally after stakeholders engaged with the government on the matter.

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