The Federal Government gave instruction to network operators in the country to disconnect every SIM card not synchronised with the National Identity Number to allow 173 firms and 30 agencies to make money from the enrollment contract.
SaharaReporters learnt that the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, hired the 173 firms and 30 government agencies to conduct the enrolment of Nigerians and data capture services – a function primarily meant for the National Identity Management Commission.
This new arrangement means that the firms and agencies were brought in under a new contract to make money from a responsibility meant for a subsisting government agency.
According to a notice from NIMC and obtained by SaharaReporters on Tuesday, the minister had cleared the 173 firms and 30 state government institutions to carry out the enrollment and data capture services.
Recall that the government on Tuesday directed all network operators to disconnect every SIM card not synchronised with the valid NIN by December 30, 2020.
— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) December 16, 2020
The order was issued after an urgent meeting of key stakeholders in the communications industry convened by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Pantami, on Monday.
The meeting in its resolution insisted that all telecom operators must require all their subscribers to provide valid NIN to update SIM registration records as from December 16.
This development comes on the heels of an earlier directive suspending new SIM registration by network operators across the country.
According to a notice from NIMC, 173 firms and 30 government institutions have been cleared to take over NIMC’s work and carry out the data capture services.
The notice reads, “The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, has approved the licensing of 173 agents and 30 state government and public sector institutions to conduct enrolment of all persons including legal residents into the National Identity Database on behalf of the National Identity Management Commission.
“Pursuant to the above, find the list of all the successful firms who satisfied all the evaluation criteria as stated in the advert for the expression of interest of each of the respective categories in full.
“The Commission congratulates all those who have been cleared to conduct enrolment of all persons on behalf of NIMC for data capture services.”
The category A are private limited liability companies and are 87 while category B are non-governmental organisations and civil society organisations and are 7; meanwhile, category C are start-up companies and small, medium enterprises and are 46 while category D is small, medium enterprises and are 33.