CAC faults NCA and telcos for illegal SIM card registration

Director of Corporate Affairs at Consumer Advocacy Ghana (CAC) Benjamin Essuman says the National Communications Authority (NCA) and telecommunication companies should be blamed for illegal SIM card registrations which leads to SIM box fraud among other crimes. Speaking on Onua FM’s Yen Nsempa on Thursday, Mr. Essuman said there are laws governing the sale of SIM cards in the country irrespective of what the consumer intends to use the card for, but some telcos turn a blind eye to some of their vendors selling without proper registration. “SIM cards cannot be sold like tomatoes or porridge would be sold in the market.” According to him, the LI 2006 that was passed in 2011 by parliament makes it mandatory that before the telcos sell a SIM card to someone, the individual must first present a valid identification card. Mr. Essuman noted that when an individual presents an ID card for SIM card registration, it must be validated to verify if the card indeed belongs to the person. He however noted that some vendors don’t request for any form of identification before registering SIM cards for people. Mr. Essuman added that in some instances, the vendors sell already registered and used SIM cards. He claimed the NCA is aware of the illegality but has turned a blind eye to it. According to him, any company that registers a SIM card without doing proper verification must pay a fine to the NCA, which the NCA has failed to be strict on. “The law states that any day an individual would use a SIM card that doesn’t have his or her name on it and hasn’t been registered properly, the telecom company must pay a 12 penalty unit amount to the government per every individual.” He said the court ought to put additional laws in place to mete out direct punishment to those who go against the law. According to him, people are using illegally registered cards to commit all kinds of fraudulent acts like mobile money and SIM box fraud.

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By Ivy Osei-Owusu | | Ghana]]>