Potraz Act to be reviewed

Potraz Act to be reviewed
Published: 09 April 2018
A POSTAL and Telecommunication Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) Draft Amendment Bill is being crafted to give the entity the flexibility to keep up with fast changing technological trends and align some provisions with the constitution.

The Bill, which is meant to repeal the Postal and Telecommunications Act chapter 12:05, is still at consultation stage. The amendment seeks to equip the regulatory body with provisions that regulate licensing in the evolving technological environment. It will also address issues to do with barriers to entry to enable a level playing field for consumers and businesses in a healthy competitive environment, as well as facilitate effective planning, management and allocation of scarce resources.

"The current Act was promulgated in 2000 and has not been comprehensively amended to take into account technological and market developments since then, hence the need to re-vamp the Act.

"The main objective of this review process is to ensure that the legislative framework remains relevant and flexible enough to deal with the fast changing postal and telecommunications landscape," said Potraz in its recent proposal document.

It said the proposed amendments will be in line with the new National ICT Policy as it seeks to create an enabling policy and regulatory environment for the growth of the country's ICT sector. President Mnangagwa recently launched the ICT Policy to guide Zimbabwe's economic development through co-ordinated use of ICTs.

"The review will align the Act with the objectives of the policy framework, which recognises the challenges brought about by technology and the need to develop effective frameworks for dealing with abuse of postal and telecommunication networks," said Potraz.

The amendments are also intended to provide elaborate provisions on the licensing of radio frequency spectrum in Zimbabwe, which the authority says are not clear under the current Act. It also takes into consideration the incorporation of women into the regulatory board.

Members of the public and companies who intend to make contributions can do so electronically to Act@potraz.gov.zw  and copy to regulator@potraz.gov.zw 
- chronicle
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