Safaricom says M-PESA and PostPay customers exempt from SIM Card Registration, Urges Subscribers to Follow State Directive

Nairobi, June 23, 2010…Leading communications firm Safaricom has clarified that it’s M-PESA and PostPay customers do not have to register their lines afresh under the SIM card registration directive currently being implemented in the country.

Even then, such customers may make time to verify their details as received and recorded by the firm.
The two services already require one’s personal details to be registered when signing a contract with Safaricom, under the Know Your Customer (KYC) and other prudential rules which have always been strictly enforced by Safaricom.

With M-PESA commanding about 10 million subscribers, this announcement is expected to be a major reprieve for the firm’s customers. It means that out of a total subscriber roll of over 15 million, only about 5 million are required to register under the presidential directive.

Safaricom had already kicked off the registration process at it’s over 31 Safaricom Retail Centers countrywide following the Government directive requiring all mobile phone SIM cards to be registered by end of July 2010. Subscribers can also register their details at 2,500 Safaricom dealer outlets and 1,600 M-PESA agents countrywide.

Under the new rules, users are required to give their postal and physical address, date of birth and alternative phone numbers, besides their names and identity cards. The directive also applies to those buying new SIM cards.

Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Michael Joseph, is now urging all Safaricom subscribers to visit the company’s retail outlets and other registration points countrywide to have their SIM cards registered.

“We have put in place all the necessary measures to ensure a smooth process. Besides our Retail Centers, dealers and M-PESA agents have also been mobilized and sensitized to assist in this important process. They can also download the registration form from our website <>  or portal, print it out and present the completed form at any of our registration centres. We are urging our subscribers not to wait till the last minute to register,” he said.

Minors with SIM cards will be required to be accompanied by an adult, who will register as the owner of the card and the minor as the user. Subscribers are not supposed to pay any cash in order to get the forms and should report anyone asking for cash for the same.

On Monday, June 21, market regulator Communications Commission of Kenya, with the support of the country’s four mobile operators launched a campaign for SIM card registration. This follows a presidential directive issued in July last year. The move was occasioned by widespread crime being perpetrated through mobile phone lines, and is expected to act as a deterrent, while making the work of investigating agencies easier.

Written by Robert

Robert Alai is a respected Kenyan blogger, technical evangelist, and social justice activist. Robert is known for his hard-hitting articles and opinions disseminated through his Twitter handle or Facebook page. he is the founder of KahawaTungu.

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