Rwanda to join other African countries in SIM-card registration

Rwanda is set to join other African countries in a nationwide SIM-card registration, a process set to be carried out from February 4 to July 31, 2013, targeting more than five million subscribers in the country.

Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Agency (RURA) said in a statement the move is aimed at curbing the rising cases of kidnappings, mobile fraud, terrorism and drug trafficking.
It is reported that MTN Rwanda, Tigo and Airtel, the three telecom operators in the country, will have to register moren than 28,000 subscribers on a daily basis, considering the registration will last for only 180 days.
MTN has already welcomed the move saying it will use its “large network of service centers and sales points distributed all over the country”.
Rwanda has started the SIM registration  in a bid to beat the December 2013 deadline set by the East African Communication Organisation (EACO), which requires all the member states to have all SIM-cards in their respective territories registered.
EACO is a regional body that comprises communication regulators, telecom operators, ICT providers and postal service providers in East African Community to monitor the sector.
Commenting on the SIM-card registration, Francois Regis Gatarayiha, the director-general of Rura, said only through SIM registration will the authorities be able to track phone criminals and help in reducing the vice.
“Many countries across the world have embarked on registering mobile customers to establish a link between the SIM card and identification details of its holder,” he said.
Rwanda will be the fourth country in East Africa to enforce SIM-card registration after Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.
Kenya is already a step ahead after it successfully saw over 80 percent of SIM-cards registered with over 1.2 million unregistered ones switched off.
Posted in: Mobile

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