Home Science Technology MTN Nigeria restricts 8.6 million lines following NCC’s deadline

MTN Nigeria restricts 8.6 million lines following NCC’s deadline

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MTN Nigeria says it has fully barred a total of 8.6 million lines from the network in line with the directive of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on SIMs not linked to the National Identification Number (NIN) of the users.

The company disclosed this in its first quarter (Q1) 2024 financial report, noting that this impacted its business in the quarter.

However, to provide more time for the subscribers with less than five lines linked to an unverified NIN to complete the necessary verification exercise, MTN disclosed that the NCC has extended the 15 April deadline to 31 July 2024.

According to MTN, the lines that have been fully barred are those of subscribers who did not submit their NIN and those with more than five lines linked to an unverified NIN.

MTN Nigeria says it has fully barred a total of 8.6 million lines from the network in line with the directive of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on SIMs not linked to the National Identification Number (NIN) of the users.

The company disclosed this in its first quarter (Q1) 2024 financial report, noting that this impacted its business in the quarter.

However, to provide more time for the subscribers with less than five lines linked to an unverified NIN to complete the necessary verification exercise, MTN disclosed that the NCC has extended the 15 April deadline to 31 July 2024.

According to MTN, the lines that have been fully barred are those of subscribers who did not submit their NIN and those with more than five lines linked to an unverified NIN.

Highlighting the impact of the NIN-SIM linkage exercise and the regulatory directive, MTN Nigeria’s CEO, Karl Toriola, said:

“During the quarter, we also continued to manage the effects on our business of the industry-wide directive of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for a full barring of subscriber lines not linked to their National Identity Number (NIN) – the NIN-SIM directive.

“This impacted the development of our user base across all of our key business units (voice, data, and fintech) in Q1 2024.

“Although we had to fully bar 8.6 million subscribers in line with the directive, we minimised the net effect of the barred subscribers, and our total number of subscribers only decreased by 2 million in Q1, closing with a total of 77.7 million subscribers.”

Toriola said this demonstrated the effectiveness of the company’s customer value management (CVM) initiatives, which helped it to retain affected customers and reduce churn, as well as to drive gross connections.

Meanwhile, the company also reported a decline in its data subscribers in the quarter under review. According to the MTN’s CEO, active data subscribers declined marginally by approximately 78,000 to 44.5 million.

“Notwithstanding these headwinds, we recorded increased activity within the base, with voice traffic rising by 5.1% and data traffic by 40.6%.

“This is a result of the consistent growth in demand for data and voice, supported by our attractive offers to customers and continuous investment in network quality and coverage,” Toriola stated.

Data from the NCC show that total active mobile subscriptions in Nigeria across the networks of MTN, Airtel, Globacom and 9mobile, which stood at 224.4 million in December 2023 had declined to 219 million as of March 2024 as all the telecom operators implemented the policy on the mandatory NIN-SIM linkage.

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