The Minister of Communications and Digitisation Ursula Owusu-Ekuful has annoyed that the national SIM card re-registration exercise, will commence at the beginning of October this year.
She disclosed this during a press briefing on Sunday, September 5, 2021.
According to her, Ghanaians across the nation are to re-register their SIM cards latest by March 31, 2022.
She explained that citizens who are expected to take part in the exercise are those above the age of 15 years.
The reason behind the exercise she noted is because of the increased use of communication services since the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic and to facilitate E-education, among others.
Eligible persons can only use the Ghana Identification card to register.
“Only the National ID card, the Ghana card, issued to an individual shall be used for registration of Sim cards of citizens, foreign residents in Ghana and foreigners staying in Ghana for more than 90 days”.
For foreigners stay in Ghana, she said: “Foreigners visiting Ghana can acquire a SIM card using the passport or travel card but they can only use the SIM card for 30 days after which it will be deactivated. Foreigners intending to use the SIM card for more than 30 days would have to obtain a non-citizen Ghana card to do so.”
For a business to register SIM cards in bulk, a shareholder or a director of the company will have to be linked personally to the registration of the SIM cards.
Aside from that, Ghanaians can only register a total of 10 SIM cards across all networks while foreigners will have a limit of three SIM cards across all networks.
“Let me caution here that people should not think that they can hide behind businesses and register as many SIM cards as they want. All SIM cards registered to a business will be linked to a shareholder or director and if a business SIM card is found to have been engaged in fraudulent activity, that shareholder will be held personally liable,” she stated.
The Communications Minister mentioned reduction in criminal activities, accurate data for the National Communications Authority (NCA) as some benefits of the re-registration exercise to be undertaken with the Ghana card.
“This isn’t the first attempt to register SIM cards. All attempts failed because of the lack of a verifiable, secure identification document. The Ghana card provides the basis for a successful SIM registration this time around.
“When undertaken correctly, as we intend to do, it will reduce or limit fraudulent or criminal activities, help authorities ascertain the correct number of valid and accurate Sims on the networks. Enable operators to build better demographics of their customer base and help them develop products and services to suit the various groupings.
“NCA will also get more accurate data to regulate the industry even better.”
She added that “Sim registration will enhance economic growth as more confidence is built in the telecommunications sector and people utilize secured devices to access E-government services and other private mobile base digital solutions.”