Uganda: UCC clarifies on Sim-Card replacements

29 March 2018


The Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) has set out tough new procedures for SIM-card swaps or replacements, that will include re-registering at the telecoms and confirming the device one is using is an approved type.

Ugandan telecommunications companies were early this month ordered by UCC to stop the sale of SIM cards through hawkers, street vendors, street agents and any other establishments that are not licensed by Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA) or other municipal and town authorities.

All telecoms were asked to acquire and install card readers at their respective service centres to validate national identification information before the activation of a new SIM card. This information will be instantly verified electronically against the national data base maintained by the National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA).

In a statement on Tuesday, UCC said it is lifting the SIM-card replacement ban, but set new conditions. “To mitigate the exceptional circumstances being experienced after imposition of the ban, UCC has instituted interim measures with which SIM card can now be swapped and replaced,” UCC said.

“As the commission concludes the process of implementation of the API with the National Identity Registration Authority (NIRA) to ensure verification and validation of SIM card registration information, please be advised that SIM cards can only be swapped and or replaced under the following (below) conditions.”

They listed them as; Production of a valid Police Report; Presentation of a letter from NIRA verifying and validating that a SIM card holder’s National Identity Card is authentic; Re-registration of the applicant for a SIM card by the telecommunications operator using bio-metrics and a photograph; Issuance of fresh SIM card registration form and Ensuring that the SIM card holder shall be using the SIM card in a genuine type approved device.

Source: The Independent