The National Communications Authority (NCA) has urged the Accra High Court to dismiss a suit seeking to stop the regulatory body from blocking the SIM cards of people who fail to register them with Ghana Cards by September 30, 2022.
The nine applicants wanted the court to put an injunction on the NCA on the basis that they had registered for Ghana Cards but were yet to get them from the National Identification Authority (NIA) in order to register their sims.
However, the NCA, in its affidavit in opposition filed Thursday, September 29, 2022, argues that the suit is incompetent because the Ghana Cards of the applicants were ready but they had failed to collect them from the NIA.
According to the NCA, a search conducted by the NIA upon request by the NCA, through its lawyer, Gary Nimako Marfo, revealed that the Ghana Cards of the applicants had been printed but they had failed to pick them up.
“It is clear that the applicants have been indolent and have not taken any positive steps to collect their Ghana Cards from the National Identification Authority,” the NCA argued.
It is also the case of the NCA that the suit failed to invoke the jurisdiction of the court because the affidavit in support of the applicants’ case was not sworn before a commissioner of oath as required by the rules of the court.
In their application filed on September 22, 2022, the applicants were seeking seven reliefs.
First, they sought a declaration that the impugned directive of the respondents requiring the applicants to re-register their mobile phone sim with the Ghana Card as the only identity document, at a time when the National Identification Authority had not been able to issue Ghana Cards to applicants, was in breach of Articles 21, 23 and 296 of the 1992 constitution of the Republic of Ghana, the National Communications Authority Act 2008 (Act 769), the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Regulation 2011 (LI 2006) and the National Identity Register Regulation 2012 (LI 2111) and so, to that extent, null and void.
Second, they wanted a declaration that the impugned directives of the respondents, on the use of the applicants’ mobile phone sim cards and network services, imposing punitive measures/sanctions commencing 5 September 2022, breach Articles 21, 23 and 296 of the 1992 constitution of the Republic of Ghana, the National Communications Authority Act 2008 (Act 769), the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Regulation 2011 (LI 2006) and the National Identity Register Regulation 2012 (LI 2111) and so, to that extent, were null and void.
Third, the applicants sought a declaration that the impugned directives of the respondents to applicants’ mobile telecommunication companies to block, disconnect, deactivate, churn and/or in any other way or manner limit the use of the applicants’ mobile phone sim cards and network services by 30 September 2022, at a time when there was no reasonable possibility of applicants receiving their Ghana Cards from the National Identification Authority on or before 30 September 2022 for the purpose of using the identity cards to register their sim cards, was unfair, unreasonable, contrary to law and to that extent, unenforceable.