NCA holding shutdown talks with Surfline?


The National Communications Authority (NCA) has said it is holding discussions with Surfline over their lingering service outage, and the issues on the table include bulk-delinking of Surfline SIMs from the Central SIM Database in the event the company fails to resume its operations. 

In a statement on its website, the NCA said it has noted with grave concern inquiries by the public regarding Surfline’s operations and service outage, adding that it has been engaging with the company to offer support to ensure that subscribers involved are protected.

“The Authority has in the past several months continued engagement with Surfline following a formal communication by the company to shut down its Radio Access Network due to some operational challenges. The NCA’s engagements with Surfline were intended to give the company the opportunity to:

  1. Resolve issues concerning its indebtedness to its Service Providers
  2. Publish information on its service outage to its subscribers
  3. Ensure that customers who have purchased data plans do not lose their data, and where applicable, appropriate compensation paid by Surfline to customers for any loss of service
  4. Commence the process to initiate bulk-delinking of Surfline SIMs from the Central SIM Database in the event the company fails to resume its operations and in relation to this, enable consumers to keep only their registered active SIMs.

The statement said “As we work for successful implementation of the above ongoing regulatory measures, the NCA would like to assure the general public, particularly subscribers of Surfline of our sustained commitment to protect the interest of all users of telecommunications services as well as stakeholders within the Industry.”


Surfline has been offline for several months now, leaving over a thousand customers hanging. The outage came a couple of months after the company launched a suit of enterprise solutions targeted at businesses in the area of risk management, cybersecurity and more.

The company challenge in-chief in their inability to pay their bills, particularly tower costs, for which reason the main independent tower company, ATC Ghana has stopped providing utility support for their equipment at the various co-location sites.

ATC Ghana wrote to Techfocus24 and said “We have not “cut off” Surfline…but have discontinued pre-financing and funding the supply of electrical power to their equipment. This has been discontinued following the persistent refusal of Surfline…to pay ATC Ghana for these services (over seven years) despite ATC Ghana having already paid ECG, purchased diesel and incurred cost in maintaining the generators to provide these service.”


Surfline has a white label partnership deal with Vodafone, which resulted in the launch of their Smart Surf service intended to put some money into Surfline’s kitty and enable them pay their bills, but that does not seem to be going that well.

Techfocus24 has also learnt that Surfline has an operator-level agreement with another telco for partnership, and have since applied to the NCA for approval, as another way to spread nationwide on the back of the telco’s infrastructure, make their 4G network available to Ghanaians and make some money from a revenue share arrangement, but that request is still yet to be approved.

Whereas that partnership request is pending, the NCA is discussing a possible shutdown of Surfline. Meanwhile, AirtelTigo, which is said to owe a higher debt to tower companies than Surfline does, is still in operations under the protection of the state.

But again, ATC Ghana explained that the case of AirtelTigo is different from that of Surfline based on where they are in discussions with the two parties.

“As you know, the Government of Ghana completed the takeover of 100% shares of AirtelTigo in 2021 including customers, assets, and liabilities. ATC Ghana is in ongoing conversations with the GoG with respect to this issue,” they added.


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