The Ranking Member on the Communications Committee in Parliament thinks the National Communications Authority (NCA) should be shut down.
He says the Authority’s inability to forecast the loopholes in the SIM re-registration process to protect people’s bio-data suggests their existence is useless.
According to the Ningo Prampram legislator, apart from the NCA’s cluelessness to foresee what was at stake with the process, they chose to be adamant when they were cautioned about the pending danger.
Reacting to the registration of SIM cards with the bio-data of people who have no knowledge of them, Sam George opined on TV3’s Ghana Tonight with Alfred Ocansey that, the means the Authority has even suggested to avert the situation makes it worse, their continuous existence as a regulator.
“I was once on the legal team of the NCA. The regulator of the place where evidence is being adduced, citizen is showing evidence that his data has been stolen by a player under the regulator and the regulator say they are introducing an app.
“We should shut down the regulator because they don’t know what they are talking about,” he said Tuesday, April 11, 2023.
Meanwhile, he has also accused the NCA for playing to the political gallery in handling something as critical as citizen’s bio-data rather than being technically prudent.
This follows an advice the MP gave to the NCA in September 2022 when the Minister of Communication and Digitalisation, Ursula Owusu Ekuful threatened to deactivate SIM cards of the ‘stubborn.academy’ who had refused to get their Subscribers Identity Modules (SIM) re-registered.
He had revealed that pre-registered SIM cards were being sold on the market.
The MP also noted the inundation of the pre-registered SIM was evident that the work which was being done by the NCA was not fit for purpose.
“As we speak today, there are SIM cards that have been registered, out of the 21 million that have completed stage one and stage two. Some of those SIM cards have been registered by other people’s Ghana Card fictitiously. And as we speak today, there are pre-registered SIM cards registered with Ghana Card on the market. So what is the Minister solving?” he said on Accra-based Joy FM in September 2022 in reaction to the Communication and Digitalisation minister’s claim of eradicating SIM fraud with the re-registration.
About eight months down the lane, the NIA is now battling with the fraud of people’s bio-data being used to register SIM cards that do not belong to them.
The MP indicated on the same show that:
“It is such irresponsibility from the regulator because we warned that this will happen and I’m not excited to say I told you so because this is personal data of the citizen because when you have a regulator who is failing to look at the technicalities and rather playing to the political gallery, it shouldn’t surprise you that he is speaking from the place of very little understanding of the situation. We have a critical problem on our hand. An app will not solve data theft. Proper regulators across the world take breach of personal data very seriously.”