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TheCable

Globacom lifts Nigeria’s mobile subscribers to 140 million — highest in six months

Globacom lifts Nigeria’s mobile subscribers to 140 million — highest in six months
January 11
12:41 2022

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) says the country’s internet subscribers rose to 140.41 million in November 2021.

The commission said this in a recent update of industry statistics posted on its website.

Of the total figure, mobile (GSM) accounted for 140.06 million subscribers — leaving Fixed Wire and VoIP for the remaining subscribers.

According to the data, the total number of active mobile (GSM) internet subscribers increased to 140.06 million at the end of November 2021 — after recording the lowest in June 2021 at 139.81 million.

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In December 2020, the federal government directed telecommunications companies to suspend the sales and reactivation of new SIM cards.

The policy denied new entrants into the country access to purchase mobile lines while existing users who want to retrieve their lost lines were not allowed access.

The government had premised the decision on the audit of the subscriber registration database in the country at the height of security challenges – banditry and kidnapping.

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By the end of the first quarter of 2021, the policy had stifled the telecoms industry with single-digit growth.

The regulatory restrictions impacted the operations of telcos, posting declines in mobile subscriptions and revenue.

The government, however, lifted the ban in April but mandated the use of national identification numbers (NINs) for the issuance of new SIM cards.

In the month under review, analysis by TheCable Index showed that all mobile networks recorded a dip in internet subscriptions — except Globalcom.

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Further checks showed that MTN Nigeria’s internet subscribers dropped 58.10 million, 9mobile dropped to 5.77 million and Airtel down to 36.92 million in November 2021.

Globacom, on the other hand, gained over 290,000 internet subscribers for the period under review, reaching 39.26 million — its highest since February 2021.

Last year, Isa Pantami, minister of communications and digital economy, had said million internet subscribers that deserted the telcos within one year are “mostly criminals”.

Pantami said the government’s insistence on NIN for new subscribers would help fight insecurity.

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