NCA, telcos have no mandate to capture data of citizens – Atuguba

The Dean of the University of Ghana School of Law, Professor Raymond Atuguba has raised legal objections to the ongoing SIM registration exercise by the telecommunications and the National Communications Authority (NCA).

According to him, it is the National Identification Authority (NIA) that has the power under the laws of Ghana to carry out such mandate.

Prof Atuguba who is among a group of prominent Ghanaians who are boycotting the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) today Tuesday February 8 as part of their protests against the registration exercise told TV3’s Dzifa Bampoh that “As far as I know it is the NIA that has the legal mandate to capture such data and store it. That mandate has not, legislatively, been given to the telecommunications companies, it has not legislatively, been given to even the NCA or the National Information Technology Agency (NITA). NITA’s functions do not include holding the biodata of citizens of tis country.”

The group who are against the registration exercise had earlier raised the issues in anticipation that the NCA would act on them. But they said in a statement on Sunday February 6 that the NCA had failed to do so hence, the decision to boycott the MNOs.

“Following the failure of the National Communications Authority (NCA) and Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to address concerns associated with the legality and chaotic Sim-Reregistration Exercise, we the undersigned Concerned Mobile Network Subscribers, and the over 7000 online petitioners, call upon our fellow countrymen and women to join our campaign for a #NoCallsDay boycott of the MNOs on Tuesday 8th February 2022.

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“On Tuesday, we are appealing to Ghanaians and all mobile network users within Ghana not to make and or received calls and all associated mobile network activities from 6am to 12midday.

“The #NoCallsDay boycott on 8th February, would be the first in a series of national boycotts to protest against the illegal and inhumane process of re-registration of SIM cards.”

Below is a lost of their concerns; that the SIM card re-registration exercise is;
(I) Illegal

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

(iii) Appropriate legal framework must be in place for any directives for sim re-registration to happen

(IV) A demand for the NCA and MNOs to come up with a better and innovative way of re-registering the SIM cards without the current chaotic and inhumane re-registration process we are witnessing up and down the country.

(V) The NCA should direct the MNOs to stop using private phones of employees to collect subscribers’ biometric data.

Our next line of action after Tuesday 8th February, if the concerns raised above remain would be a full day’s (6am – 6pm) boycott on Tuesday 15th February, and same every other Tuesday until the appropriate action is taken by the NCA & MNOs.

Signed:

  1. Hon. Ras Mubarak
  2. Prof. Raymond Atuguba
  3. Dr. Kwesi Owusu
  4. H. E. Hassan Ayariga
  5. Mr. Franklin Cudjoe
  6. Mr. Kofi Bentil
  7. Mr. Gyedu Blay Ambolley
  8. Mr. Kofi Kakraba Pratt
  9. Hon. Mrs. Mona Quartey
  10. Mr. Samson Lardy Anyenini
  11. Mr. James Afedo
  12. Mr. Selorm Branttie
  13. Mr. Francis Kofi Korankye-Sakyi
  14. Mr. Manasseh Azure Awuni
  15. Akyaaba Addai – Sebo
  16. Ms. Amma Sarfo-Kantanka
  17. Mr Kwame Mfodwo
  18. Mr Michael Ofori – Akuffo
  19. Dr. Godfred Seidu Jassaw
  20. Nana Kwaku Agyeman
  21. Mr. Appiah Adomako
  22. Mr. Sulemana Issifu
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By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana