9 July 2013

Nigerian GSM Subscribers with Unregistered SIMs to Lose Numbers Soon


Telecom subscribers in Nigeria, whose numbers were disconnected after the expiration of the June 30 deadline for SIM card registration, may forfeit the numbers in 90 days if they do not report to their network operators for full registration, according to reports.

SIM Card
A SIM card from one of the local provider
Affected subscribers whose SIM cards are already barred will have such SIMS permanently disconnected on September 28, 2013 if they fail to register such SIMS with the respective operators before that date.

Background and Subscribers' reactions

Many telecom subscribers were shocked on Friday last week as their mobile lines were finally disconnected from their operators’ network because their SIM cards were not registered, after numerous announcements from regulators.

Those affected were not able to use their phones to make calls or send text messages, although BlackBerry Nigeria services, the arm of Blackberry services in Nigeria, were operational on the affected lines.

However, many of those affected claim they were disconnected despite having registered their SIMS in the past.

NCC Representative Speaks

Speaking on the disconnected SIMs, the Director of Public Affairs, Nigerian Communications Commission, Mr. Tony Ojobo noted thus:
“As long as they are not registered, they can’t be reconnected. If after 90 days and there are no activities on the SIMs, the operator can recover the numbers.

“If the subscribers register their disconnected SIMs, they will be reconnected. We are doing this because these numbers are like resources.”
Recommended: NCC Hit GSM Operators N647.5million Fine, Telecom Stakeholders Protest

How To Get Reconnected to Your Network

The process of reconnection is easy. On arrival at any of the many service centres across Nigeria, you will be required to complete the SIM registration process or update your personal information and provide biometric data, after which your SIM card will be re-activated as soon as possible.

Subscribers are expected to be readmitted into the network within hours after the process has been completed.

From all indications, the actual disconnection of unregistered SIMs took effect five days after the June 30 deadline set by the NCC.

Important Points to Note

In summary...affected subscribers will be issued application forms, which they are expected to fill before being readmitted into the networks, and are also expected to provide their biometric data.

Affected customers need not panic, as teams of customer service officers of the various Nigerian networks are ready to assist in reactivating their lines once they have completed their SIM registration as mandated by the NCC.

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