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Digital advocacy group urges Palace to suspend SIM registration

Digital Pinoys

A network of digital advocates is urging President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. to suspend the SIM registration law.

Digital Pinoys national campaigner Ronald Gustilo said that Malacañang should now move in and suspend the implementation of the law after Department of Information and Communications Technology the decision to not extend the registration period despite pleas from telecommunication companies, subscribers and other stakeholders.

“Now that DICT has rejected pleas to extend the registration, the onus is now on the President either to extend or suspend the law’s implementation.”

Gustilo said that a review of the implementation of the SIM registration law is needed after more than 90 million subscribers have failed to register.

“Instead of outrightly disenfranchising the millions of unregistered subscribers, the government should look into the reason as to why did this happen and come up with a real working solution to fix the registration woes.”

Gustilo also blasted the DICT for refusing to get off its high horse and turning a blind eye on the real situation on the ground. Recent updates from telecommunications companies shows that the registered SIMs only make up of a little more than 40% of the active SIMs. Subscribers have been actively voicing out their concerns regarding the lack of valid identification cards, connectivity issues and gadgets to use for the registration process, as well as the security of their personal information.

“Clearly, the DICT is refusing to heed the widespread clamor for the extension of the registration period. They are also turning a blind eye on the numerous complaints against the registration process. They are playing god just because they are tasked to implement the SIM registration law.”

Gustilo said that by suspending the registration process and thoroughly reviewing it will the government be able to come up with a viable solution to the registration woes.

“With the DICT trying to cover up for its inability to fix the issues surrounding the SIM registration, the suspension and review of the registration process will benefit the public more. The government should listen this time and ensure that the millions of subscribers will remain connected and not disenfranchised. It should also acknowledge the real impact of disenfranchising users, not only to their day-to-day lives, but also to the general economy.”

Reference: Ronald Gustilo, Digital Pinoys National Campaigner, www.digitalpinoys.org