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Mobile phone operators deactivate over 280,000 sim cards

Mobile phone operators have deactivated 287,214 sim cards as from April to June this year, making good their threats to deactivate some sim cards.

This move is part of the cleanup that was started by the Communications Authority (CA) with an aim of a ‘cleaning’ up exercise that the authority started in the run-up to the just concluded general elections. In their press briefing today, the CA revealed that the number of mobile subscriptions fell from 64.9 to 64.7 between April and June this year.

“Between 2021-2022 financial year, the mobile phone sub-sector was marked by a significant regulatory intervention that involved the updating of registration details of all sim cards in the country. This exercise involved the deactivation of SIM cards registered under wrong identification details,” the CA said during their quarterly report in June.

Further, the sim replacement was greeted with political undertones being expressed by politicians. For example, ANC party leader Musalia Mudavadi – in one political campaig rally in Nyamira county – did allege that the state was using registration, and deregistration, of sim cards to plan to rig the just concluded presidential election.

Speaking over the issue of SIM card registration, the CA director Ezra Chiloba said that Safaricom company had the highest compliance rating, at 67%, while Airtel had 55% as Telkom has a paltry 33 percentage compliance rating.

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