TCRA launches biometric Simcard registration in the southern highlands

16May 2019
The Guardian Reporter
MBEYA
The Guardian
TCRA launches biometric Simcard registration in the southern highlands

THE Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) in collaboration with telecommunication operators has launched the biometric registration of telephone lines (Sim card) in southern highlands zone.

This is to implement the national exercise which commenced on May 1, this year requiring all simcards holders to re-register by using National Identification Card (ID).

Speaking during the launch,  TCRA manager for southern highlands zone Asajile John said the exercise among others, is aimed to curb criminal activities in the country.

According to him, the new system will also reduce the unknown mobile phone users, thus curtail the rise of terrorism and cybercrime.

“TCRA will continue educating the public on the importance of this exercise, this system has a number of benefits but it seems that the public is yet aware of the importance of the exercise,” he said.

For his part, Mbeya District Commissioner William Ntinika urged the general public to make well use of the given timeframe and make sure that they register by using fingerprint.

Lavia Maikontalima, a NIDA registration officer for Mbeya region said that the authority was all ready to facilitate biometric registration of mobile telephone numbers assuring the public that the exercise will be completed on time.

 Late last month, President John Magufuli directed that people without national identification cards should not be denied mobile phone services for not registering their simcards using the document when the set deadline elapses in September.

The head of state questioned the exercise’s practicability since many Tanzanians do not have the IDs.   He wanted the authorities to rethink on the decision.

 

Addressing a public rally in Mbeya city, Magufuli said that “In a normal logic, this exercise is impossible; announcing that on May 1, every simcard holder is required to go through biometric registration using national ID card is quite impracticable.”

 

Instead, he wanted the exercise to firstly consider those with the national IDs and not to force those who are yet to get the IDs. “The exercise’s deadline should at least be extended by December this year,” he added.

TCRA has set September 30, 2019, the deadline for registering simcards with biometric technology.