The Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications has told Citi Business News it is confident its members will meet the September 30 deadline for a mop-up exercise of SIM card registration.
Telecom operators have since April this year, commenced a mop-up exercise to register some existing and new SIM cards of their respective customers.
“We have not had complaints from our members yet with regards to being able to meet the deadline but we believe that they are currently working assiduously to ensure that they can bring their respective mobile accounts up to date,” the Head of Research and Communication at the Chamber of Telecommunications, Derek Laryea told Citi Business News.
He added, “In the interim, I cannot say yes that they can be able to meet the requirement but the regulatory requirement is that before the deadline that account needs to be deactivated.”
The re-registration of SIM cards by the telecom operators comes on the back of a directive from the industry regulator, the National Communications Authority [NCA], that it will deactivate all accounts that do not meet the standard registration requirements.
Parliament in 2012, also adopted the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Regulations, 2011 (L.I. 2006) to give backing to SIM card registration in the country.
The Head of Research and Communication at the Ghana Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, Derek Laryea also explains to Citi Business News the re-registration will afford the creation of a reliable database.
“We have in excess of 33 million mobile SIM connections; obviously there is some level of error and I believe that this exercise is working at correcting that little margin of error so that we can have a robust database,” he remarked.
Customers to fast track registration
Meanwhile the Telecoms Chamber has urged customers to help to ensure compliance by visiting the various shops of their mobile operators if they are not sure that they registered appropriately and they have not been contacted yet.
Alternatively, customers can send a blank text message to the short code ‘400’ across the various networks.
SIM card registration
The registration of SIM cards became necessary following efforts by the NCA to among other things, empower subscribers as bona fide owners of their telephone numbers and in turn strengthen them to demand better services.
By registering their numbers, subscribers also improve their chances of seeking replacement of their SIM cards in the event of loss.
In addition, the registration was also aimed at increasing subscribers’ power of choice in a more competitive market noting that one of the reasons for the registration exercise was to pave way for the introduction of Mobile Number Portability (MNP) which has since been launched with a good degree of success.
In the course of the review process, NCA has undertaken constructive dialogue with various stakeholders with a view to making available to customers other benefits of SIM Card Registration.
One such benefit is incorporating into the SIM Card Registration an enhanced facility for the protection of customer investment in handsets and other devices through voluntary registration of their International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI).
By: Pius Amihere Eduku/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana