Registration of names of pre-paid SIM CARD holders is needed-Sotto

By Jason de Asis

SENATE OFFICE, Manila, January 27, 2011-Senate Majority Floor Vicente C. Sotto III renews his call to the government to seriously adopt the policy requiring the registration of names of pre-paid SIM card holders during the Senate’s hearing on the peace and order situation in the country  where the Senator pressed on the matter first proposed by him during the 11th and 12th Congress when there were series of bombing incidents in the country and the explosive devices were reported to be triggered by mobile phones

Sotto brought it up in the light of Tuesday’s bus explosion that killed five (5) persons and injuring a score of others. Initial reports said a mobile phone was used to trigger the improvised explosive device, saying that the incidents happened in Mindanao and other areas where bombings happened and the bombs were triggered by cell phones.


During the proceedings, the Senator said that to refresh the memory of the committee, he was the chairman of the committee on public services in the 11th and 12th Congress. During that time, he was already driving home a point to the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) and he hopes that this time the PNP and the DILG will back him up on the issue. He once again, asked them to make the telecommunication companies register their pre-paid SIM card.

Sotto said that the perpetrator of the bus explosion could have been traced immediately had telecoms firms already require their pre-paid SIM card subscribers to register their names upon its purchase, explaining that those engaged in nefarious activities like kidnapping and carjacking could easily dispose the pre-paid SIM card after the commission of the crime and authorities will have no lead as to their identity.

He recalled several years ago that when he first broached the idea to the NTC, some telecom companies filed a petition before the courts and granted them a temporary restraining order (TRO). This rendered the initiative of the senator fruitless.

“The biggest clue that could probably help our police track down these criminal elements is in possession of the telecoms companies,” he said, adding that the place, the number used and the precise time the bomb was triggered could probably be determined if pre-paid cards are registered.

The Senator stressed that to regulate the use of pre-paid SIM cards is a great help to solve problem pointing out that if there is an issue that we should address now, in the light of what is happening around us, therefore now is the time to call the attention of the Palace to initiate the matter. (Jason de Asis)

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