Thousands of MTN subscribers rushed to various MTN offices across the nation after receiving a text message that alerted them of a possible disconnection from the network today according to a directive by NCC.
The Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) asked operators of the Global System for Mobile communication to deactivate all unregistered subscriber identity modules (SIMs), prompting subscribers of the MTN networks to storm offices of the network in a last minute rush to register their mobile lines.
Also, subscribers who didn’t properly register their lines might suffer the same fate going by the directive of NCC
When visited some offices of the network provider, subscribers were seen occupying every available space. Inside of the offices were full to the brim and the queue stretched to outside of the offices.
NCC on August 18, 2015 said about 38.78 million lines were either unregistered or improperly registered. Out of these defective mobile numbers that belong to four network operators, about 10.7 million have been blocked.
The 10.7 million people, whose lines have been barred from either making or receiving calls, would need to regularize their details before they could be able to use the lines.
There are indications that after the expiration of the deadline set by NCC, 28.61 million more lines would be blocked.
NCC said that affected phone lines were deactivated due to improper registration details which include zero facial information, poor finger prints and other biometrics challenges.
The regulatory body added that decision to deactivate the defective mobile lines was taken after consultation with the National Security Adviser and other stakeholders in the industry as a security measure.
It was learnt that operators that failed to comply with NCC directive will be slammed with sanctions as stipulated by Sim card registration code, section 19 to 21. The act states that operators will pay N200,000 per defective SIM found.
Speaking with NigerianEye, most of the angry residents claimed they registered their MTN SIM but do not know why MTN should tell them to complete the registration with a photo ID.
One of the customers who preferred to be anonymous said
‘MTN is a very useless network, I will be switching to GLO or Airtel after this. I did my registration since last year so why should you say I should complete it now since last year. to make matters worse they even blocked the line. We are here so that we will show how pissed we are and if they are not careful Nigerians will stop using them.’
Another customer who identified himself as James revealed that he was received a text message today warning of disconnection if he doesn’t re-register his phone number, he narrated how he had to rush down from his office, waited for 4 hours, only to be told his line was ok.