The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, said it has noticed that despite regulations and directives against the sale and use of pre-registered SIM cards, Operators through their Dealers/Agents still sell pre-registered SIM cards in several parts of the country.
Tony Ojobo, Director, Public Affairs, in a statement on Wednesday reiterated NCC’s provisions on the matter.
It called the attention of the public to Sections 19 and 20 of the NCC (Registration of Telephone Subscribers) Regulations, 2011 which states: 19.(1) Any licensee who fails to capture, register, deregister or transmit the details of any individual or corporate subscribers to the Central Database as specified in these Regulations or as may be stipulated from time to time by the Commission is liable to a penalty of N200,000.00 for each subscription medium.
“(2) A licensee who activates any Subscription Medium without capturing, registering and transmitting the personal information to the Central Database commits an offence and shall on conviction be liable to a fine of N200, 000.00 for each unregistered activated Subscription Medium.
“20.(1) Any licensee who activates or fails to deactivate a subscription medium in violation of any provision of these Regulations is liable to pay a penalty of N200,000.00 for each unregistered but activated subscription medium.
“(2) Where the Commission is satisfied that a body corporate is culpable, the Director, Chief Executive Officer, Manager or Secretary shall also be liable to pay a fine of N200, 000.00 unless, having regard to the nature of his functions in that capacity and to all the surrounding circumstances, he proves that: (i) the offence was committed without his knowledge, consent or connivance; and (ii) he took all reasonable precautions and exercised due diligence to prevent the Commission of the breach.”
Continuing, the statement warned Operators and their appointed Dealers/Agents to desist forthwith from the practice of pre-registering SIM cards and selling same in the open market in violation of the above stated provisions.
It also notified to stop purchasing pre-registered SIM cards and insist on being registered personally for any new SIM card purchased, adding that “all violators will face stiff sanctions as the NCC will enlist the assistance of law enforcement agencies to address and curb this menace.”