Minister for communications and digital economy, Isa Pantami has directed the immediate suspension of some National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) staff accused of extortion.
Kayode Adegoke, head of corporate communications of NIMC confirmed this in a statement released on Sunday January 3.
The suspended NIMC staff members were accused of being involved in extortion of applicants at the NIMC Bauchi and Kaduna State offices, in contravention of the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) Act and Sections 10 & 12 of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act.
The statement read;
“The punishment for extortion if convicted is seven years imprisonment as stipulated in sections 14, 20, & 21, of the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) Act and Sections 10 & 12 of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act.
“The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Ali Isa Ibrahim (Pantami) has directed the immediate suspension of staff members involved in extortion of applicants at the NIMC Bauchi and Kaduna State offices,” the statement said.
“This directive came on the heels of public outcry that some personnel of NIMC, particularly at some enrolment centers in Bauchi and Kaduna capitalizing on the rush for NIN by the public to perpetuate fraudulent activities inimical to policy directive of the Federal Government which requires mobile network subscribers to update their SIM registration with a valid National Identification Number (NIN).
“The Honourable Minister restated his zero tolerance stance on extortion, bribery and corruption and further noted that such unethical practices if allowed to fester and not nip in the bud by taking stiffer actions against the culprits, has the potency of derailing the SIM-NIN Integration project.”