Isa Ali Pantami, the former Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, has raised concerns about the effectiveness of the National Identification Number (NIN) and Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card integration policy in combating insecurity. Pantami accused security agencies, including the Nigerian Police Force, of not fully utilizing the potential of the NIN-SIM policy to track criminals.
In response to a social media inquiry questioning the substantial investment in the policy against the backdrop of continued insecurity, Pantami highlighted that the implementation of the policy faced significant challenges. He emphasized that the reluctance of security agencies to leverage the NIN-SIM policy had hindered its intended impact in addressing the country’s security issues.
The former minister shared these thoughts following his revelation that a friend had volunteered to contribute N50 million towards the N60 million ransom demanded by bandits who had kidnapped six children of Alhaji Mansoor Al-Kadriyar.
“NIN-SIM policy has been working. However, the relevant institutions fighting criminality are to be requested to ensure they utilise it effectively when a crime is committed,” Pantami wrote.
He stated: “Lack of utilising it is the main problem, not the policy. While in office, I know of three instances where the policy was utilised, and it led to the success of their operations.
On the lack of utilisation, I am more worried than anyone, as my life was threatened by criminals for reintroducing it, including on BBC Hausa and national dailies; I resisted and ensured its implementation.
“If it is not being utilised by the relevant institutions in charge of securing lives and property, then I am more frustrated than any person, as I sacrificed my life and ignored all the threats to life.
“This is just a point out of 100 on the policy. May the Almighty rescue all the kidnapped and bring absolute peace and stability to Nigeria, and may He (SWT) continue to guide our leaders and help them always in discharging their responsibilities.”