Lawyer sues NCA, telcos over personal data collection for SIM card re-registration

A Private Legal Practitioner, Francis Kojo Kwarteng Arthur, has sued the National Communications Authority (NCA) and telecommunications companies operating in the country over what he calls the unauthorized collection of personal data.

According to him, personal information such as fingerprints and pictures, amongst others, are being taken by private institutions, rather than the National Identification Authority, NIA, which is mandated by law to do so.

Speaking to Citi News, Francis Kojo Kwarteng Arthur, said he is praying the court to permanently suspend the SIM card re-registration exercise until a ruling on the case is delivered.

“I am praying the court to ask the NCA to desist from the SIM card re-registration in its current form. I have applied for an interlocutory injunction.  I am asking that the NCA should be directed or instructed to tell the telcos to suspend permanently the re-registration of SIM cards that is ongoing so that after the case is determined, we will know the way forward.”

The re-registration of mobile SIM cards is expected to last for six months, ending on March 31, 2022.

The exercise is in accordance with the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Regulations, 2011, LI 2006 to curb SIM boxing and other criminal activities.

These are mostly perpetrated by fraudsters using fake SIM cards.

SIM card users will require the National Identification card to be able to register their SIM cards.

Any SIM which is not registered at the end of this exercise will be blocked.