The communications regulator in Uganda, UCC has given all mobile telecom companies a deadline of 30 days to deactivate all unregistered SIM cards, this means that by November 30th, all telcoms should have all their existing subscribers registered. At a press briefing yesterday, Uganda Communications Commission’s executive director, Mr Godfrey Mutabazi, warned the telecom companies at a press conference and said;
“We have warned them several times but this time we are serious. Today, we have written to all of them. This time we mean it. If they fail we will penalise them and also move in to deactivate all the unlicensed Sim cards”
Mr Mutabazi told the press that failure for the telecommunication companies to implement the directive would attract a fine or have their licenses revoked. This begs to question how serious UCC is with their fining, since their last attempt to fine MTN over $1 million for misuse of shortcodes never saw the light of day. In Nigeria, the communications regulator has already fined MTN about $5.2 billion for failure to comply with the directive of disconnecting all un registered SIMs. Can UCC pull such a move once some of the telcos fail to comply? The some media houses however report that the telecos have not yet received such a directive from UCC.
In 2013 UCC directed all telecom companies to register all their new and existing subscribers as move to see all 16.4 million telecom subscribers registered.