The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has concluded plans to wade into action against importers of counterfeit Information and Communications Technology devices into the country.
It was gathered that the Commission recently held secret talks with heads of some relevant agencies in the country that would aide its move against the perpetrators.
The move by the NCC is coming on the heels of the commission’s discovery of influx of fake and substandard ICT products into the country in recent time, a source from the commission said.
It was gathered that the commission had resolved to deploy an unusual strategy in collaboration with some relevant agencies, including the country’s law enforcement agencies to fish out such importers who have constituted themselves as bad influence and bottlenecks to legitimate operations of standard ICTproducts in the country.
The planned strategy by the commission was however, yet to be made public.
Some of the agencies that the NCC is collaborating to combat the perpetrators include the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), among others.
Confirming the development, Prof. Umaru Danbatta, Acting Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, said it was high time the commission waded into swift action, adding that it can no longer tolerate the use of preregistered SIM cards by criminal elements to perpetuate crimes in the country.
Danbatta, who noted that anybody involved in the sale, distribution or use of preregistered SIM card is considered a threat to national security, however warned Nigerians against buying preregistered Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards as buying and using such cards is punishable by law.
“We request that subscribers avoid buying or distributing preregistered SIM cards as this is a criminal act punishable by imprisonment. Anybody involved in the sale, distribution or use of preregistered SIM card is considered a threat to national security, and if caught, will face the ugly consequences, he said.
The NCC boss explained that the decision to deactivate SIM cards that were not properly registered during the SIM card registration exercise was to ensure the collective and individual security of Nigerians.
By Patrick Aigbokhan