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Manasseh Azure, Ras Mubarak, others to embark on ‘no calls day’ protest

SIMCARD SIM CARD Ghanaians to protest SIM re-registration

Thu, 13 Jan 2022 Source:

Unregistered SIM cards to be blocked by March 31st 2022

Subscribers bemoan long queues at telcos service centres

No law in Ghana requires mobile network subscribers to “Re-register” SIM cards, Group

A group called the Concerned Mobile Network Subscribers have declared their intention of going on a “no calls day” protest to register their displeasure with regards to the ongoing SIM card re-registration.

The group consists of notable personalities including the former Member of Parliament for Kumbungu, Ras Mubarak; Dean of UG’s School of Law, Prof. Raymond Atuguba; President and Vice President of IMANI-Africa – Franklin Cudjoe and Kofi Bentil; Private Legal Practitioner, Samson Lardi Anyenini, and Investigative Journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni.

According to them, the exercise can be done without having subscribers’ queue at the various service centres for long hours to have their cards re-registered.

"We, the undersigned Concerned Mobile Network Subscribers, having consulted Ghanaians across the country, have set aside Tuesday 8th February 2022 as a 'No Calls Day.' On that day, we call on all Ghanaians not to make or receive phone calls as a way of registering our disquiet about the circus surrounding the SIM card re-registration exercise," the Concerned Subscribers noted in a communique.

The No Calls Day boycott on 8th February, would be the first in a series of national boycotts to protest against the current inhumane process of re-registration of SIM cards.

Mobile phone users in Ghana, are expected to re-register their SIM-cards by linking their Ghana cards to their phone numbers. The first stage is to be done by dialling *404# after which they are required to visit a customer care agent for the final stage of the exercise.

The National Communications Authority stated that the two processes are to be completed by subscribers by March 31, 2022, or risk losing their numbers.

The exercise, the NCA explained, will help to reduce SIM-related fraud while creating reliable data of mobile phone users across the country.

But the Concerned Mobile Network Subscribers described the move as illegal stating that there are no laws in Ghana that necessitates the re-registration of SIM-cards. They have demanded that the March 31 deadline directive should be withdrawn until a legal framework is developed.

“There is no law in Ghana that requires Ghanaian mobile network subscribers to “Re-register” their SIM cards adding that “any attempt to impose this on subscribers or block their lines would amount to an infringement of their property rights”.

They make the following demands:

(I) The National Communication Authority (NCA) should immediately withdraw its directive for mobile network customers to re-register their SIM cards by 31st March 2022.

(II) When the appropriate legal framework is in place, a re-registration exercise can be done without having subscribers spend productive hours and several days in long queues in the midst of a ravaging Covid-19 pandemic.

(II) There’s understandably a need to eliminate crime. But the fight against criminals must be within the law. We therefore demand that the NCA and Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) must come up with a better and innovative way of re-registering the SIM cards by first amending existing law; and secondly, to do so without the current inhumane re-registration process we are witnessing.

Following the above, the group said the first of a series of planned boycotts will begin if their demands are not met by Tuesday, February 8.

“If the NCA and the MNOs fail to heed these demands, we shall, starting Tuesday, 8th February 2022 begin the first of a series of planned boycotts until the rights of customers to be treated with dignity are respected”.

Below is the full statement:

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