Nigeria switches fixed line phones numbering, sets December 31 deadline

Nigeria’s telecoms regulator has set December 31 deadline for new numbering switch on fixed line phones from eight to 10 digits with ‘02’ prefix. 

As of July this year, Nigeria has 96,771 active fixed-line phones compared to 220,537,233 mobile lines (GSM) and 226,983 VIOP lines, according to NCC data reviewed by Technology Times.

Following the switch, Nigeria’s fixed-line phone numbering format changes from eight digits to 10 digits with the addition of “02” prefix before the existing fixed number, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), which announced the change, says in a statement made available to Technology Times.

“The Commission hereby informs the public of the changes and also clarifies that existing numbers will continue to operate concurrently till the cut-over date of December 31, 2023. From January 1, 2024, the new numbering format beginning with “02” prefix will be operational.

“In other words, the old and new number formats are allowed to run concurrently till the cut-over date (December 31, 2023). Thereafter (from January 1, 2024), the new fixed-lines format will assume full recognition across all networks,” according to NCC.

WIth the switch, in the new order, to dial the hitherto existing number, 09461700, phone users will now dial 02094617000.

Additional examples, NCC says are for Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Kano’s current number format of 014630643, 094630643, 084460643 and 064460643, which will now be 02014630643, 02094630643, 02084460643 and 02064460643 respectively in the new numbering format.

“However,” NCC says, “it is important to note that the change only affects the fixed telephone numbers. There is no change to the existing mobile numbering format,” according to the telecoms regulator.