While addressing journalists at the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) house in Bugolobi, Henry Tumukunde, the minister for security has warned that this time around, there will be no extension on the SIM card registration deadline.

This was after a closed meeting with Telecom companies in Bugolobi.

The minister said that those who will not have been registered by May 19, will be switched off.

“We shall not compromise the deadline this time around. I want to pass message to the public especially those I hear saying they had registered properly as by then, who are not keen on re registering that they should move ahead and register, the deadline is May 19,” he said.

The meeting was attended by the police boss, Kale Kayihura and the Executive Director UCC, Godfrey Mutabazi. The media was not allowed to attend the meeting and asked to go back on Monday (next week) for a press briefing.

A source privy to the closed door meeting between government officials and telecom companies said that the companies wanted an extension of the deadline, citing technical issues such as the slowness of National Identification and Registration Association (NIRA) in issuing the IDs.

“we are trying to help the efficiency of the different players and do not be worried about the efficiency we are going to work with telecom companies, tap every resource available to make sure that NIRA is efficient and this is in full consideration of the deadline,” Tumukunde said when asked about the issue of ID issuance.

He said that they are well aware of the efficiency of Ugandans and the systems working on the registration and that is why they were holding the meeting to ensure that everything is on track to enable Ugandans register their SIM cards.

“This meeting has the sensitivities of business because government collects money from telecom companies and telecom companies make money from having their systems function and you know very well that the brief case business is now the telephone,” he said.

Tumukunde explained that the deadline is to enable them ensure that all security tenets are put in place to avoid further breaches.