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Ministry invites public to submit views on ICT Bill 2024

Wednesday, July 10th, 2024 15:45 | By
ICT and Digital Economy Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo. PHOTO/@EliudOwalo/X
ICT and Digital Economy Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo. PHOTO/@EliudOwalo/X

The Ministry of Information, Communications and the Digital Economy has invited members of the public to submit their views on the ICT Bill 2024.

"The Ministry through the Committee on Revitalization of Regulatory Agencies has developed the Draft Information and Communications Technology Bill, 2024 ('Bill'). The Bill proposes the establishment of a mechanism for integration of ICT in Government entities," a statement from the ministry noted.

Members of the public, relevant stakeholders and interested parties are invited to submit their suggestions, views and inputs with justification to inform reviews on the bill.

"The objective of this Bill is to establish an Act to provide a legal framework for the establishment, powers and functions of the Information and Communications Technology Authority (ICTA) and provide for a well-coordinated and regulated oversight of ICT matters at both the National and County levels," the statement added.

Written submissions should be submitted to the ICT Authority using the provided template indicated in the notice image not later than 5.00 PM EAT on 15 July 2024 through [email protected] and copied to [email protected] or to the address indicated on the notice image.

Notice by ICT Ministry for public participation in ICT Bill 2024. PHOTO/mygov.go.ke

The new bill introduced by Cabinet Secretary Eliud Owalo seeks to facilitate the registration of all practitioners in the country and assign them various categories of accreditation based on their level of education and qualification.

Similarly, the bill proposes an annual accreditation fee to be imposed on all practitioners in the ICT sector.

The bill which is publicly available on the Ministry of ICT website proposes that a register of accredited practitioners will be published and gives the Ministry of ICT sweeping powers to deregister practitioners deemed to have contravened the law of practice.

Uhuru declines ICT Bill

In June 2022, former President Uhuru Kenyatta declined to assent to the ICT Practitioners Bill and sent it back to Parliament after industry leaders expressed dissatisfaction with some of its proposals.

One of the contentious issues was the requirement for practitioners to be accredited based on a level of education determined by the ministry.

Practitioners argued that this could lead to massive job losses, saying most tech people lack formal education but have learnt the craft through other means.

If signed into law, experts have expressed worries that it could jeopardize start-ups with founders who lack the requisite educational background proposed by the Ministry as the basis of accreditation.

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