From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Zain Determined to Register All its Subscribers Before NATCOM’s Deadline of 30th June 2010
By Augustine Samba
May 31, 2010, 12:28

The Sierra Leone leading telecommunication company, Zain, is putting modalities in place to register all its subscribers, before the deadline date which was scheduled by the National Telecommunications Commission (NATCOM). "At the behest of NATCOM, existing and new subscribers of cellular networks in the country are expected to register their SIM Cards before 30th June 2010 for security reasons," said Zain Sierra Leone Head of Corporate Affairs and Communication, Kelvin Kellie. On this note, he went on Zain Sierra Leone has doubled its effort to ensure that it meets NATCOM’s June 30th SIM registration deadline of all its subscribers.

At the commencement of a nationwide subscriber registration and sensitization programme to raise public awareness about the exercise, Kelvin E Kellie said Zain had over the years demonstrated its commitment to partnering with government and regulatory agencies to ensure that it played its role as an industry leader in the development of the country.

According to Kelvin Kellie the rationale given for this new regulation was that it will enhance security, help eliminate fraud and crime, and improve upon the risk environment of businesses, redounding to the ultimate benefit of the ordinary subscriber who shall be better able to reclaim lost numbers, link their phone numbers to other commercial accounts, and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing that their lines are secure, which is all assured on the Zain Sierra Leone platform.

It was further disclosed by Zain that the Commission also embarked on the registration process as a matter of National Interest in collaboration with the Office of National Security together with the Ministry of information and communications.

It was revealed that NATCOM had since late last year directed all telecom operating companies to put all necessary arrangements in place for the smooth take off of the SIM registration process which is aimed at improving security in the country.

What this means is that all prepaid and postpaid SIM cards would be mandated to have their ownership details registered with the network operators as from 30th June 2010. After the period ends, non-registered SIM cards will be shut out.

The SIM card registration, which is in tandem with international best practices, is intended purposely to track down criminals bent on using cell phones to commit crimes.

The process will provide a greater database of market information of mobile phones technology in the country, thus ending dispute around the market leader. It will help combat cell phone theft because it will be easier to trace the SIM card and the phone.

Zain as a law abiding and responsible company has sought to employ all avenues just to create an easy way for registering their numerous and valued customers. In this regard, the company has in place registration centers at all Zain offices and within the western area.

There are also employed free-lancers in mobile teams going to the door steps and also in offices of our valued subscribers to do this registration. Zain only needs to capture subscriber’s name, phone number, address, digital photo. These are the specific requirements needed from the subscriber at no cost to ensure the smooth flow of the process.

© Copyright 2005, Freetown, Sierra Leone.