Econet Wireless has no unregistered SIMs to disconnect

3 Oct 2013

Econet Wireless, Zimbabwe’s largest mobile operator in terms of subscribers, has announced that the company has no unregistered users to disconnect, TechZim reports. A source told the news agency: ‘We did ours [disconnection of unregistered SIMs] a few years ago, you may want to check in the archives. Econet must have shed 1.4 million [subscriptions]. Others were allowed to carry on with unregistered SIMs.’ As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in July 2013 telecoms regulator the Post and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) issued a new directive to all mobile operators to disconnect unregistered subscribers due to an ‘upsurge in the number of offensive and abusive calls and text messages generated from unregistered SIM cards across all networks made and/or sent to citizens of Zimbabwe and members of the republic.’ Following the directive, Telecel Zimbabwe disconnected a total of 100,000 subscribers; Telecel’s branding and communication director Obert Mandimika clarified at the time: ‘Close to 90% of these [100,000 users] were subscribers deemed as technically dormant, as they had gone over 90 days without any activity on their lines.’ Rival cellco NetOne followed suit in September 2013, reportedly also disconnecting 100,000 unidentified SIM cards on its network.