By Mark Kawalya
A new range of services has been added to the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) e-services portal in line with the organization’s plan to accelerate efficiency and customer experience in the body’s service delivery.
The regulator’s website has been updated to allow clients to sign up and apply for services and keep in step with the progress of their applications, as indicated below.
- FM Radio Broadcasting License Application
- Online Data Communications Authorization
- Equipment Type Approval Application
- Postal and Courier License Application
- Logical Channel Number Application
- Short Code Application
Short codes are telephone numbers that are shorter than the standard national significant number and do not require a national destination code. They are typically used to access specific services, in Uganda they are either 3 or 4 digits long. The 3-digit long numbers are reserved for network customer services, safety and emergency services. The 4-digit numbers are granted to businesses that demonstrate a genuine need for them.
The Uganda Communications Act 2013, stipulates that any firm intending to provide services that involve communication to the general public using audio, video, still or moving pictures, or a combination of the mentioned, constitutes a communication service that is subject to regulation by the UCC.
UCC has digitalized more of its services to offer a convenient and seamless application process for users who are seeking the regulator’s services. This will reduce the need to visit their body’s premises, even as the commission moves towards paperless service delivery.
In the past, applications for services had to be made physically, leading to delays and increasing the cost of doing business. But now, with the e-service portal, one only needs a computer with an internet connection to make an application.
Aside from licensing different communication services, the UCC is also mandated to type-approve all communication equipment (broadcasting, telecommunication, and radio communication) prior to importation, installation, and operation in Uganda.
Equipment type approval ensures equipment compliance with the different approved communication standards to protect users, networks and ensure that services offered meet quality standards.