Today January 24, 2022

Court strikes out injunction against ongoing SIM Cards re-registration

Accra, Dec. 09, GNA – The Human Rights Division of the Accra High Court has struck out an interlocutory injunction against the ongoing re-registration of the SIM Cards.

This was after the applicant, Mr Francis Kwarteng Arthur, a Private Legal Practitioner, through his lawyers led by Dr Justice Srem Sai withdrew the application.

Mr Arthur on November 22, 2021, sued the National Communication Authority and the owners of telecommunication services over the re-registration of SIM cards.

The applicant prayed the High Court to stop the collection of personal data of subscribers for the re-registration exercise.

Aside from the originating motion seeking for enforcement of his fundamental human rights to administrative justice, to speech, to information and to privacy, the applicant also filed an interlocutory injunction to halt the process until the final determination of the case.

When the case was called on Thursday, December 9, 2021, Dr Sai withdrew the application for an interlocutory injunction after the Court had said it could not stop the ongoing re-registration before the injunction was heard.

Mr Gary Nimako Marfo, a lawyer for the NCA, had indicated to the Court that, they had filed their affidavit in opposition to the application for interlocutory injunction and followed with their statement of case.

It was when counsel prayed the Court for the case to be adjourned to enable the NCA serve the applicant with its processes.

While the parties wanted the injunction heard on December 15, the court said they should pick a date in January.

Mr Marfo, responding to the prayer of the Counsel for the applicant, said, the over-riding interest of over 30 million Ghanaians should not be sacrificed for the applicant.

He said per the ongoing exercise, the Government was working with timeliness and State Institutions should not be stopped in the manner Counsel for the applicant was requesting from the Court.

The Court presided over by Justice Barbara N. Tetteh-Charway, said, this kind of application to restrain the Government before the application is taken, could not be exercised by the Court.

” The interest of the public must also be taken into consideration as against the harm the applicant stands to suffer, hence the Court cannot make such an order before the injunction is taken,” she said.

It was this that made the applicant through his Counsel to withdraw the application and same struck out as withdrawn.

Meanwhile, the parties have been directed to file their processes for hearing of the substantive matter to commence.

Mr Arthur sued NCA (1st Respondent) together with Ghana Telecommunications Company Limited (2nd Respondent), SCANCOM PLC (3rd Respondent), AIRTELTIGO Ghana Limited (4th Respondent) while the Attorney General was put on notice.

The applicant as per his case filed on Monday, November 22, 2021, is asking the Court to “make an order directing at the 1st Respondent/Respondent to suspend its notice to Mobile network operators directing, instructing, or requesting them to procure, store or use the Applicant’s personal information (including the fingerprint of other subscribers), pending the determination of the issues in the originating motion on notice.

The applicant is also seeking the Court to “make an order of mandatory injunction firecrest at the 2nd Respondent/Respondent, the 3rd Respondent/Respondent, the 4th Respondent/Respondent to suspend the collection, storage or use of the Applicant’s personal information including his fingerprint, iris or facial pattern record or other biometric data or particulars and of other subscribers, pending the determination of the issues on the originating motion on notice.

“Any order that the honourable court may deem fit under the circumstances for the protection of the fundamental human rights and freedom of the public at large.”

Source: Ghana News Agency



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