Pantami: Nigerians Without NIN Risk Fine, Jail Term


Isa Pantami, minister of communications and digital economy, says Nigerians involved in business transactions without a national identification number (NIN) risk jail term or fine.

He said this while delivering an address at a press briefing in Abuja yesterday.

Pantami warned that those yet to obtain their NIN are violating a section of the NIMC Act of 2007, noting that 51 million Nigerians have registered for their national identification number (NIN).

He referenced section 27 of act which establishes NIN as a prerequisite for several registrations and transactions in Nigeria.

According to him, while obtaining a SIM card maybe optional, NIN is mandatory as it is a criminal offense in Nigeria to carry out business activities without it.

“Based on the requirement by law each and every citizen and legal resident must obtain his/her national identification number, which is being coordinated by the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC). It’s a requirement by law but many citizens ignore it,” he said.

“For you to open a bank account without national identity number is an offence. For you to pay tax is an offence, for you to collect pension is an offence, for you to enjoy any government service, without having national identity number is an offence.

“No country will be successful in education, health, budget planning or national planning without database of its citizens in place.

“The NIMC Act clause 27 states that you need the NIN for opening bank account, for insurance, land transactions, voters registration, drivers licenses. So, it is an offense to transact any business activity without first having your NIN.

“Section 29 says if you do any of these in 27, without obtain National Identity Number you have committed a crime that will lead to fines or imprisonment, or both of them.”

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