Legislators Call for Speedy Presentation of ICT Bills

Parliamentarians have urged Government to expedite the presentation of ICT related bills before the Parliament in a bid to promote accountability and transparency in the sector.

Government announced a raft of laws to regulate the ICT sector in Zimbabwe with some having been gazetted while others are still awaiting parliament approval.

By Kudakwashe Pembere

Time is running out for the Parliamentarians as they are left with just a year in the committee to deliberate on the bills.

Expressing his concern at a Potraz workshop in Masvingo on the lukewarm approach towards the bills, Zaka Central legislator Paradzai Chakona made queried POTRAZ on the timeframe left before the bills are presented before the August house.

Potraz Legal Services Director Mrs Cecilia Nyamutswa

“Mrs Cecilia Nyamutswa said in her presentation that her department is the advisor to the Minister in so far as legislation is concerned. And this committee has got one more year to go. I would say they have not actually handled one bill that will come through to the committee and also in terms of future legislation, i think those are the areas we are pretty much concerned about, and we are saying when are the bills going to be brought to parliament.
“When are they going to be finalised so that the committee can interrogate these bills before presentation to parliament ,” he said.

“In line with pending bills relating to the ICT Ministry, we are actually recommending that these bills be presented to parliament at the earliest convenience. We urge the ministry and Potraz to expedite the presentation of those bills at the earliest convenience,” he said.

“And then the enforcement of legislation especially the acts legislation that is in place right now especially those that relate to penalties or anything must be enforced. We want to give an example. When we talk in terms of infrastructure sharing this has already been gazetted and we expect the network operators to start sharing infrastructure, there is no need to wait.

“Issues to do with quality of services quality of calls et cetera, this must be enforced. And people want to see action being taken. People are losing money every day. Calls are dropping and we expected Potraz to basically take action,” said the legislator.

Wedza MP David Musabayana echoed the same sentiments as Chakona’s saying they cannot wait to look into the acts.

“There was a call to expedite the Cyber crime bill, we cant wait for that,” he said.

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