Civil society group, the Peoples Project is seeking a court injunction to prevent the National Communications Authority (NCA) from enforcing its 30 September 2022 deadline of blocking all unregistered SIM cards in the country.
According to the group, blocking of SIM cards while the National Identification Authority (NIA) has not issued the Ghana Card to persons, which is a requirement for reregistration, is capricious and unconstitutional.
The group, led by musician and politician, Kwame Asare-Obeng, popularly called A-Plus, in its suit against the NCA and Attorney General (AG), on Friday, 9 September, 2022, is seeking a “declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of Articles 2(23) and 296 of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana, the Directive by the Minister for Communications, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, on Sunday, July 31, 2022, that the First Defendant will ensure that all SIM cards that are not re-registered by 30 September, 2022, will be blocked while the National Identification Authority (NIA) has not been able to issue the Ghana Cards which is the only card to be used for the said re-registration of all Ghanaians is arbitrary, capricious, amounts to an abuse of discretion and same is unconstitutional, null, void and of no legal effect.
“A declaration that on a true and proper interpretation of Articles 2, 23 and 296 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, the Defendants are estopped from blocking the SIM cards of Ghanaians who have not been able to re-register their SIM cards until such a time where the NIA is able to issue the Ghana Cards to all Ghanaians.”
It is also seeking, “an order of injunction restraining the Defendants, its agents and stakeholders from executing the declaration by the Minister for Communications that unregistered sims will be cancelled by 30 September, 2022, until the final determination of this suit.
“An order directed at the Defendants requiring the Defendants to suspend all ‘punitive’ measures enrolled by the Defendants seeking to penalise all individuals who have not been able to re-register sim cards until the final determination of this suit.”
The NCA on Sunday, 4 September 2022, announced it will block all unregistered SIM cards as part of punitive measures to ensure all SIM cards are registered.
On Monday, 5 September, 2022, the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) began implementing the directive by the NCA to block unregistered SIM cards.