Rica catches millions out

2011-07-02 00:00

OVER a million cellphone users in the country were disconnected after missing the deadline to register their SIM cards by midnight on Thursday.

Cellphone users had to register under the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication Related Information Act (Rica), which is supposed to help in the fight against crime.

Ashleigh Dubbelman, Vodacom’s senior specialist in corporate communications, said about a million SIMs were locked on their network after the RICA deadline.

She said they will keep the registration centres at schools and taxi ranks open until Monday to accommodate those who missed the deadline.

Eddie Moyce, MTN SA customer relationships executive, said they were still reconciling the numbers of customers who were affected by non-compliance with Rica, but said the numbers are “insignificant”.

Cell C chief executive officer Lars Reichelt said that of the company’s seven million customers, 0,01% of contract customers and three percent of prepaid customers did not meet the deadline.

One of the those affected, Ingrid Sinclair, poured out her frustration on Vodacom’s Facebook fan page after her SIM got blocked.

Sinclair said she was told that she was Rica’d when she called the Vodacom call centre, but woke up yesterday to find her phone disconnected. As a result, she said, she has lost two days’ worth of business.

Frank Knowles (51) of Clarendon who waited over an hour to register his three MTN business line SIM cards on Thursday, told Weekend Witness he was lucky that his connections were not cut off. He said he was disappointed at himself for leaving it so late after all the advertising urging cellphone users to Rica.

“Customers have a grace period of 120 days from the deadline date to reactivate their cut off lines or face the possibility of losing their numbers,” Cell C’s Reichelt warned.

To reactivate a number, users need to take their SIM card, along with a green barcoded ID document and recent proof of address, to Rica agents or network service provider stores to register.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.