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New measures regulate SIM card sales

28 November 2013, 09:30

Nairobi - The Ministry of Information and Communication and Technology (ICT) has issued new rules governing the sale of subscriber identity module (SIM) cards, outlawing companies from selling activated cards.

In addition, minors would no longer use student identity cards to register their SIM cards but would rather need guardians to register them on their behalf.

“It shall be a serious offense for an individual apart from a licensee or an agent to sell a subscription medium,” reads part of the proposed regulation from Information Cabinet Secretary Dr.Fred Matiang’i.

Contravening the law would attract a fine of Sh 300 000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or both.

Agents who breach the regulations would face similar penalties if the courts found them guilty.

Under the new rules, a mobile subscriber shall be liable for any activities carried out using a SIM card registered in their name if they could prove that they were not in control of the medium when the activities were being carried out.

Mobile SIM card retailers reacted with dismay, saying the government was planning to frustrate them.

A hawker, who only identified herself as Mildred, lamented the move.

“The government should not frustrate small scale businesspeople. This is another attempt to kill our business,” she bemoaned.

Government compels mobile phone subscribers to register their SIM cards as part of plans to combat phone-related crimes.

To register, a subscriber has to produce identity particulars and proof of residence.

– CAJ News


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