Mixed Reactions over Simcard Registration Deadline

1861 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
Timothy Tembo argues that some people can only register under pressure and supports governments decision to enforce the deadline.

Some members of the public have supported government's decision not to extend the simcard registration and validation exercise, saying ample time was given for the exercise.

On Friday, government announced plans to implement the deadline to switch off unregistered simcards come August 30th. However, a section of simcard users want government to extend the deadline for the third time, saying it is not their fault that the National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA) is yet to issue them with National Identity card.

Each simcard user needs to validate their simcard using their National Identification Number-NIN found on the national identity card.  However, some of the phone users, say the time allocated for simcard validation is sufficient.

Timothy Tembo argues that some people can only register under pressure and supports government's decision to enforce the deadline.
//Cue in: "What it has been…
Cue in: …yet registered theirs"//

Babra Nakintu, another user says she used the extended deadline to register her simcard. She notes that although, it is difficult and tiresome to get the national identity card, the time given was enough and Government should stand by it.
Julius Ariho, another phone user says although the time given to register was sufficient, the process of getting the national identity card is difficult. He asks Government to work with NIRA to solve the problem of accessing the IDs before switching off lines.

//Cue in: "Twalibadde obudde bwe…
Cue out:..singa okukola ki"//

 Ashraf Mbazira, another phone user says Government should have known from the start that simcards ought to be registered. He says cutting people off will make them suffer yet it's not their fault.

//Cue in: "Abantu abasinga tebalina…

Cue in:…bajira bayongera yo"//
Another mobile phone user and vendor, says simcard registration is difficult for one who is just trying to get an identity card. She says Government should consider giving people ample time to register. She says she had to use her husband's number in order to register her line.

//Cue in: "Pol dano peko…

Cue out:… an I sim"//


About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.