By Edith Mwale, Lusaka, Zambia
Zambia’s opposition leader Brigadier General Godfrey Miyanda has revealed that the Zambia Information and Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA) has reminded him that it would deactivate his SIM card by midnight yesterday.
But Miyanda says he has not committed any crime, neither is there a credible record of the prevalence or abuse of his communication gadgets to justify any derogation from his guaranteed rights.
“By this single act, ZICTA is attaching the condition that before I can enjoy my guaranteed freedom of expression I should first apply to the Authority or their agents to be registered. By the same token, ZICTA are infringing my right to privacy and other proprietary rights. I contend that these freedoms and liberties cannot be taken away arbitrarily or traded for a few minutes of airtime,” said Miyanda.
He said his communications to ZICTA and the Mobile Service Providers over the matter have remained unanswered.
“This means that by midnight I shall not be able to communicate or use my purchased implements for such communication. In short until this issue is resolved I shall be off air, including off the internet,” Miyanda added.
Miyanda, the anti-SIM card registration campaigner in Zambia has refused to register his SIM cards claiming the exercise was an infringement on his rights and freedom.
ZICTA had set January 31, 2014 as a deadline for SIM card registration exercise. Miyanda also claimed the SIM card registration exercise was illegal.