Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) has set September 30 as the new deadline for existing phone users to register SIM cards.
The deadline for the exercise was originally set for March 31, but Parliament later said Malawians were not fully conversant with the exercise. This led Minister of Information and Communication Technologies Nicholas Dausi to suspend the exercise, only to lift the suspension a few weeks later.
But in a statement Macra issued on Friday, signed by director general Godfrey Itaye, the regulator notes that every SIM card purchased from July 1 will have to be registered within a maximum of seven days.
Reads the statement in part: “When all subscriber details have been provided, the SIM card will be activated before the seven days elapse. But if this has not been satisfied within the seven days, the SIM card will no longer be useful and the customer will need to buy another one and start the process over.”
The mandatory SIM registration and generic numbers, rolled out last June, is expected to help prevent crime and fraudulent cases encountered by mobile phone users. n