Another deadline for simcard registration looms

BY Christine Kasemiire

The clock is ticking for mobile phone users who have not verified their sim card registration using the National Identification Numbers (NIN).

With only 20 days left to the August 30th deadline, the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) has revealed that 3.7 million subscribers have not yet been verified.

The commission’s Executive Director Godfrey Mutabazi says of the 25 million subscribers that applied for sim card registration, only 85 percent have been successfully verified by the National Identification and Registration Authority.

NIRA spokesperson Gilbert Kadilo says the exercise is ongoing, urging members of the public to comply with the UCC directive and avoid the last minute rush.

This is the second extension by the regulatory body.

The first extension was at the request and pressure from the public and the Uganda Law society in April saying the deadline was illegal.

The deadline was then pushed from April 20 to May 19.

In May, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni asked for another extension to August 30 creating tension between ICT minister Frank Tumuwebaze and parliament since he was overriding parliament’s resolution to extend the simcard registration deadline.

A plea from Mr Mutabazi urged all people that have not yet registered to do so because the 3 month grace period given to them elapses soon and come August 30, the unregistered subscribers will be switched off.