Mobile Number Portability (MNP) became operational in Ghana on Thursday, and mobile phone users are already taking advantage of it to switch networks whilst still keeping their numbers. The MNP will enable subscribers, dissatisfied with their current operator, to move from one network to another without changing their numbers and still be reached by their contacts on the same number. According to the National Communications Authority, the system would also ensure that service providers serve customers better. With the system now in effect, it should be possible for clients to walk into the service center of the telecom operator of choice with an ID and tell them that you wish to be on that network with your old number. Bob Palitz, a Consultant for the National Communications Authority (NCA) on Mobile Number Portability, told Joy News Dzifa Bampoh that over 100 had successfully ported their numbers at the close of the day, Thursday, which was more than expected. He also emphasized that operators are mandated to port within 24 hours, noting that except for some “serious reasons”, an operator has no excuse to accept or reject somebody who intends to port his or her number. Dr. Charles Wereko-Brobbey, former chief executive of the defunct Ghana@50 Secretariat, who had earlier kicked against the MNP, insisted that the system is not the best for mobile phone users. He told Joy News on Thursday that the NCA should rather ensure that the service providers improve their performance to the level as pertains elsewhere. But Mr Bob Palitz explained that the MNP is not a substitute for NCA’s regulatory mandate, and asked people to stop creating “erroneous report” to “misinform” subscribers. According to Saqip Nazir of Porting XS, the firm managing the porting process, the process of migration on the whole, has been smooth. He told Joy News that persons who want to port would only deal with the prospective operator, without communicating anything to their current operator. When porting is done, one would have to send a free text message to a specific code number for confirmation, Mr Nazir said. After porting, he remarked, one would only be able to port back to his previous operator after a 30-day period.
Bob Palitz, program manager NCA implementation Number Portability