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TCRA: Ignore these horror phone messages

Discussion in 'Biashara, Uchumi na Ujasiriamali' started by BabuK, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. BabuK

    BabuK JF-Expert Member

    Sep 5, 2010
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    They could be gimmicks hatched by people with ill-motives only they know, says official ,TCRA Director General John Nkoma.

    The Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) has appealed to the public to remain calm in the face of widely circulating alarmist messages relayed via mobile phones.
    The frequency with which the messages were relayed from became notoriously high yesterday. Some warned cell phone users against receiving phone calls from a set of particular numbers “or risk serious harm, including brain damage, haemorrhage or paralysis – or even instant death”.
    The telephone numbers described as harmful and dangerous include 7888308001, 9316048121, 9876266211, 9888854137, 9876715587.
    The messages in English include the numbers cited, while those in Kiswahili merely outline what are said to be the danger that receiving the “hazardous” phone calls cause but do not give any numbers.
    “Please don’t attend any calls from these numbers. These numbers come in red colours…you can get brain damage due to high frequency,” warns one of the messages, which scores of phone users among them journalists and other staff in The Guardian Limited newsroom said they had received.
    According to the messages, which strongly advise whoever receives them to alert relatives, friends and other loved ones as soon as practicable, it is on record that 27 people died while or soon after receiving calls from the said numbers.
    TCRA confirmed in a press statement after inquiries from this paper that it had received complaints from mobile phone users concerning the messages but stressed that there was absolutely no cause for alarm.
    “From the weight of substantial international scientific and technological research, there is no substantive evidence that the use of communications equipment such as mobile phones can cause harmful health effects,” TCRA Director General John Nkoma said in the statement.
    He added that the messages bore no grain of truth “and should be ignored with the contempt they deserve”.
    He called on mobile phone users and members of the larger public to continue using “available information and communication technologies and related modern equipment, including mobile phones, television and computers currently in use the world over” without fear.
    “The goal of TCRA and all its licencees providing communications is to ensure that the people of Tanzania get excellent and safe communications infrastructure, services and applications,” said Prof Nkoma.
    In an interview with this paper earlier yesterday, TCRA acting Corporate Communication Manager Semu Mwakyanjala said that mobile phone infrastructure and gadgets have been designed in such a sophisticated but safe manner that they cannot harm users.
    “The quality of these infrastructure and gadgets has been subjected to rigorous testing and experts are satisfied that they pose no physical, mental or other harm to cell phone users. On top that, TCRA has top-class experts who keep monitoring mobile phone frequencies to ensure that they are not health hazards,” he added.
    Mwakyanjala dismissed as “false, misleading and baseless rumours” reports about people dying while or sooner after receiving calls from the phone numbers cited.
    “One could even hazard a guess and view what we are witnessing as gimmicks hatched by people with ill-motives best known to themselves,” he noted.