Speaking during the event at the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) Leadership Training Centre in Karen Nairobi, Kenya, ICT Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi said that his ministry is focused on an inclusive and consultative process in order to enable them come up with a Bill that is friendly to all sectors and to the public.
“We are driven by information and research. This is why we are focused on inclusive and participation by the public. I urge all of you to embrace the culture of consultation in order to understand all process of constitution,” he said.
The Bill drafted by the Working Group seeks to provide for a statutory framework governing the communications sector in order to conform to and satisfy the requirements of the 2010 constitution.
It also proposed to make a raft of amendments to enable better regulation of the sector by providing for the handling of new regulatory challenges in the communications sector due to rapid technological changes.
The proposed Bill also seeks to rename the Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) the Communications Authority of Kenya so as to better reflect the regulatory function of the current commission.
Matiangi asked those in attendance to be practical and realistic by developing frameworks that will benefit both the government and the industry.
“Create a regulatory framework that is friendly and support all the parties,” he said.
Later in the day, participants engaged in breakout sessions to discuss various issues, including independence and governance of the authority, the Universal Service Advisory Council (USAC), broadcast content, consumer concerns and postal courier concerns.
Responding to a question asked by one of the participants about the change of commission’s name, Mercy Wanjau, an officer from the CCK, said the practice worldwide is that all regulatory bodies operating in a converged ICT sector are referred to as authorities, thus making them adopt the name in keeping with the current industry practice.
Other groups suggested the Bill be called the Kenya Communication and Multimedia Bill instead of The Kenya Information and Communication Bill.
Prof Mbutu, the chairperson of the Working Group, concluded by asking members to continue giving their views.
“We will sit down with the group to discuss on the raised proposals,” she said.