The National Communication Authority (NCA) says it is working with Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) and the developer of the Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card registration application, to ease human congestion that has characterised the ongoing exercise.
The measures include the deployment of additional registration points across the country, to facilitate the process and development and implementation of daily quota and ticketing system for SIM registration bio-capture at the customer care centres.
A statement issued by the NCA on Thursday, acknowledged the frustration and inconvenience of customers in their bid to complete the second stage of the SIM Card registration process.
Explaining the daily quota and ticketing system, it said the MNOs would develop systems to schedule customers who had completed the first phase, to visit particular centres by a given date or window for the second phase of the registration.
The additional registration centres, the statement said, included outlets such as distributor shops, retail centres and other agent touch points across the country, and urged subscribers to embrace the move to make the process smoother.
It said NCA and its stakeholders were working on the deployment of various ad hoc registration points at various public areas including lorry parks, churches, mosques, among others and the public would be updated on the availability of such points.
Additionally, the statement said, the Authority would create additional temporary locations at various government or state owned enterprises, including NCA Regional Offices, Community ICT Centres, established by the Ghana Investment Fund, for Electronic Communication (GIFEC), including nationwide post offices.
“The general public is hereby encouraged to be patient as these measures are rapidly implemented. Further, customers are advised to complete the stage one of the registration exercise by linking the Ghana Card with SIM card by dialing 8404 before visiting the MNO customer care centre or agent to reduce the time spent at the centres”, it said.
The Ghanaian Times last Thursday reported that hundreds of people continued to be in long queues at the various telecommunication centres in Accra to have their SIM cards registered.
This comes after the government’s directive for all SIM cards to be reregistered within a period of six months (from October, 2021 to March 31, 2022) using the Ghana card.
A visit to some MNO centres including Mobile Telecommunications Network (MTN), AirtelTigo, and Vodafone, in Accra, showed long queues of people, some of who had been there as early as 3:00 a.m.
They complained about the stress they had to go through before they could have their SIMS registered with some saying they had been there the previous days but they never got their cards registered.
Initiated by the Ministry of Communications and Digitalisation, the SIM card registration exercise aims to secure the country’s cyberspace, monitor and track down persons who procure multiple SIMs for unscrupulous activities.
It is in accordance with the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Regulations, 2011, LI 2006 which mandates network operators or service providers to activate a SIM only after the subscriber registers the SIM as directed by the NCA.
BY JONATHAN DONKOR