Written by CTV3 Publisher
Thursday, 29 September 2011 19:43
In a Press Release dated yesterday September 27th, The Ministry of Police and Public Safety advised the public of a new law that will be enacted very soon. It involves that little handy device that you go everywhere with and forms a huge part of our lives; yes we’re talking about your cell phone. The Ministry is making it mandatory for everyone to register their prepaid cellular stating, “in the interest of National Security under the Telecommunications Act edition 2002 section 44 (5), Belize Telemedia Limited and Speednet telephone companies will begin the mandatory registration of all existing pre-paid cellular numbers effective Tuesday October 11th 2011.”
Once the registration process has commenced, there will be a six month grace period in which you will be expected to register your phone. At the end of that six month period, all numbers that have not been registered will be deactivated.
The Ministry of Police and Public Safety states that the measure is part of GoB’s anti-crime efforts. Crimes conducted with the use of cell numbers that cannot be traced back to any specific user have been hampering investigations that could lead to arrests and the closing of case files. We here at CTV-3 agree with the purpose of the registration of cell numbers for the specific purposes of cell number recover, elimination of cell phone theft, and for the assistance of law enforcement in detecting, investigating, and prosecuting crimes. We just express caution to those directly involved in the monitoring of “flagged” numbers for suspicious activity that they will not over stop their boundaries for direct political targeting.
In an interview with another media house, Public Relations Officer for the Ministry Raphael Martinez was asked if once numbers were registered and a name was linked to it, if it could be used for wiretapping and message interception. Martinez responded, “Exactly, once you’re registered, you can be recorded and the message can be used against you.” Again we stress, we at CTV-3 hope that the persons in charge of tapping the lines will not be influenced by any political interference in targeted tapping.