The Nigerians Communications Commission (NCC) has banned a significant portion of the Nigeria population from owning a SIM Card.
The Commission through a new Directive has disqualified anyone below the age of 18 from registering and owning a SIM Card in the country.
The Directive is contained in a draft copy of the modified Registration of Telephone Subscribers Regulations published by the Commission.
The regulation supports the directive of the Commission to Telecom companies to limit the registration of SIM Cards owners to only Nigerians above the age of 18.
The regulation defines a qualified SIM card owner saying a “Subscriber means a person not below the age of 18 years who subscribe to communication services by purchasing a subscription medium or entering into a subscription contract with a licensee”.
In simple terms, the Commission has defined a telecom customer or subscriber or SIM Card owner as someone who is not below the age of 18. This disqualifies anyone not up to 18 years of age from registering and owning a SIM Card.
Licensee in the regulation refers to telecommunication companies such as MTN, Airtel, GLO, 9Mobile etc.
According to the NCC, the directive is in line with the Nigerian Communications Act of 2003.
MTN Nigeria Reacts to the Directive
Leading Telecommunication Company in Nigeria, MTN has commented on the directive. MTN urged the Commission to review the age limit. The Telecom leader said the limit should be revised to 14-years old and above.
Despite the plea by MTN, the NCC insisted the new age limit should remain 18 years and above for anyone who wishes to register and own a SIM Card in Nigeria
What does this mean for crypto adoption?
The CryptoTvplus team reached out to leading cryptocurrency exchange Naijacrypto, CEO, Chiagozie Iwu on the impact of this directive on the growth of crypto in Nigeria.
He said,“I don’t think the Directive will have an impact but it will result in a lot of “helicopter parents”.
He explained further “I don’t see so much effect on the digital asset space, because the decentralized nature will not allow them to be non-participants. Basically they (NCC) are saying parents should register the SIM Cards on the behalf of their children which will encourage a lot of helicopter parenting.”
Helicopter parents are parents who pay extremely close attention to their children’s activities in order to not only protect them from pain and disappointment, but to help them succeed.
Helicopter parents are said to be overprotective and excessively try to influence a child.
Some argue that helicopter parenting could result in a child not developing self confidence.
Price of new SIM Cards went up by over 1000%
It should be recalled that in 2020, the Nigerian government mandated every SIM Card owner to link their Sim cards to their National Identification Number (NIN) and failure to do the same will ensure the lines are disconnected.
The government also suspended the registration of new SIM Cards for several months and when the suspension was lifted, the price of SIM Cards went up by over 1000%.
The Nigerian Communication Commission has now fixed a new date October 31st 2021 for the disconnection of unlinked phone numbers to National Identification Number.
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