It is public knowledge that the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) directed network providers to block all SIMs that are not linked to NINs by January 19, 2021 for subscribers with existing NIN and February 9, 2021 for subscribers without NIN.
In other words, telecom subscribers in Nigeria, without exception, are required to pair their NIN with their SIM details.
Considering the implication of not complying with NCC’s directive, here is a short list for MTN subscribers who are yet to link their phone numbers to their NINs.
Firstly, the fundamentals are terms that many have heard a lot in the past few weeks – NIN and NIMC. NIN is an abbreviation for National Identification Number, which is the unique number that identifies a person as a Nigerian and issued upon enrolment by the NIMC.
It is used to match biometric data and other details in the National Identity Database during verification and authentication.
In effect, the NIN is used to tie all records about an individual into the National Identity Database and is also used as a valid means of establishing or verifying individual identity.
NIMC, on the other hand, refers to the National Identity Management Commission, which is the primary legal institution in Nigeria with the sole responsibility for identity management.
If you don’t have a NIN, it is imperative that you register. To register, walk into any accredited NIMC ECRs (Enrolment Centres) close to you and if you are not sure where to find one, visit www.nimc.gov.ng for a list of all enrolment centres nationwide.
NIMC ERCs are the only authorised centres where persons can register for their NINs. When NIN is ready after enrolment, the NIMC office will notify the owner.
Persons who have already registered for their identity number may confirm it by checking their Slip.
It has an 11 digit number at the top left corner on the second row. They can also dial *346# from any network and press 1 to check their identity number.
The USSD code works for all networks. In the event that one loses their slip, they could visit any bank of their choice, pay a token of N500 through Remita and provide the Remita Teller to any ERC near them to request for a NIN slip print.
MTN has created a self-service portal for customers who have multiple numbers they would like to link to their NIN, so that they can easily link their numbers from the convenience of their location.
If you are an MTN subscriber, simply download MyMTN App and follow the prompt on the homepage or dial *785# using the phone number you wish to link, enter your NIN and submit or dial *785*Your NIN# from the phone number you wish to link.
You will get a notification stating that your NIN has been received. However, since network providers do not store NIN database, they will still have to wait for confirmation of your NIN from NIMC through a backend process before your number is finally linked and when that’s done you will receive a message.
That process might take weeks, so don’t bother about that now. What is more important now is to submit your NIN, lest your line is blocked.
You can also visit https://mtnonline.com/nin/ to submit your NIN details. Thereafter, dial *346# to confirm if it has been received by MTN. If you get an 11- digit number upon dialing *346#, on your line, this means your NIN is attached to your number.
On the other hand, an error message will pop up to indicate that the transaction was not successful if the attempt at linking the multiple phone numbers fails. If you have registered for a NIN and you keep getting an error message, dial your service provider helpline to register your complaint.
It is worthy of note that the process of registering for, enrolling, and updating NINs are entirely individual. Spouses, siblings, and relatives cannot register, enroll or update on behalf of one another.
Finally, persons in the diaspora may also enroll. They can simply click https://www.nimc.gov.ng/diaspora/ for details of diaspora enrollment.
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