The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) says a total of 110 million SIM cards have been registered and collated by all the GSM service providers operating in the country.
Mr Reuben Muoka, NCC’s Public Relations Officer, stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday.
Muoka said that the figure was based on the data collated by the commission from all the GSM providers.
He said that the registered SIMs were more than the estimated number of lines on the network.
Muoka said that the commission would soon begin the verification of all GSM registered SIM cards.
“By March 2012 we had finished uploading all the data registered from the exercise and it amounted to 110 million plus. You know in the network we have about 90 million lines.
“Then you will asked how comes we now have 110 million lines, it means that people registered twice, people probably registered one number in three different locations, people may have registered five lines repeatedly in several areas.’’
The NCC spokesman attributed the multiple SIM registration to inconsistent information from the GSM operators.
“In 2011 and early 2012 most service providers were still sending text messages to their subscribers asking them to register their SIMs even after some of them had done so. This created room for multiple SIM card registration.
“That was why NCC advised subscribers who had registered their SIM cards to ignore such messages.’’
“Now the next stage which the Commission is going to commence very soon is verification. You know during the exercise we were telling people even when your operator sends you a number telling you, you did not register well or you have not registered well, you should not bother, at the end of the day it is NCC that will determine the status of your data, so it is that stage that NCC is going to enter now.
“NCC will now issue a code where people can send text and verify if they have registered, that is the next stage and final stage.’’
Meanwhile, the commission has yet fixed a date for the commencement of the verification exercise.