Ghana - NCA warns subscribers to register their SIM cards by March 3

Telecoms

Parliament has adopted the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Regulations, 2011 (L.I. 2006) to give backing to SIM card registration in the country. The Legislation provides that with effect from Saturday, March 3,2012, no SIM card can be used if not duly registered.

Consequently, no mobile network operator shall be able to activate a SIM card for a new customer without it having been registered. In addition, existing subscribers who have either not registered their SIM cards or whose earlier registrations are invalid are required to re-register, failing which their SIM cards will be de-activated.

This was contained in a statement issued in Accra on Thursday by the Director-General of National Communications Authority (NCA).

It explained that the statement was to highlight the issue of the mandatory requirement that any SIM card in use must be registered by the deadline of March 3, 2012 after which any unregistered SIM card cannot be in use.

The statement said on July 1, 2010, Ghana embarked on a SIM Card Registration Exercise which required users of mobile telephony services to register their SIM cards.

The exercise was to run for a full year from July 1, 2010 to June 30 2011 at the end of which any SIM card that remained unregistered would be deactivated.

At the end of that period, nearly all SIM cards in use had been registered. However, it quickly became evident that quite a

number of subscribers had not followed the due process for the registration therefore, their registrations could not be validated.

While some of the reasons for invalid registrations could be traced to the quality of subscriber information provided, others could be attributed to human error in the registration process, or plain deception on the part of subscribers and registration agents alike.

At the time, the NCA announced the need for time to allow for invalid registrations to be corrected and indicated the Authority's resolve to ensuring that the exercise achieved a thoroughly sanitised and complete register.