___[15 April 2014] Overview of the ICASA Amendment Act 2014
___[8 April 2014] The ICASA Amendment Act 2 of 2014 was assented to by the President on 7 April 2014 and has been published for information purposes. The Act will come into operation on a date to be proclaimed by the President in the Government Gazette.
___[26 February 2014] This Bill is now finalised before the Portfolio Committee.
___[15 February 2014] The ICASA Amendment Bill has been referred back to the Portfolio Committee on Communications by the Select Committee on Labour and Public Enterprises with the some technical amendments to the nature of an acting Chairperson and to the quorum requirement.
Of interest is the insertion into the list of qualifications which are to be taken into account of when selecting ICASA Councillors of proficiency and experience relating to “content in any form”. Pending the outcome of the ICT Policy Review process, this possibly indicates an intention to house a future online content regulator within ICASA.
___[23 January 2014] The Electronic Communications Amendment Bill 2013 and the ICASA Amendment Bill 2013 have now been referred to the the Select Committee on Labour and Public Enterprises subsequent to the finalisation of the debate before the Portfolio Committee for Communications. The Select Committee will undergo the same process that the Communications Committee did and propose amendments if there are any and then the Bill will be referred back to the Communications Committee. If there are no proposed amendments from the Select Committee, then the Bills will be sent to the President for assent.
Hearings are scheduled for Wednesday 29 January and Wednesday 5 February 2014.
[29 September 2013] The Portfolio Committee for Communications has scheduled hearings on the ICASA Amendment Bill 2013 and the Electronic Communications Amendment Bill 2013 for 1-4 October 2013. The hearings will be held at ICASA’s head office in Katherine Street, Sandton.
Programme for Public Hearings ECA and ICASA 1 October 2013
Programme for Public Hearings ECA and ICASA 2 October 2013
Programme for Public Hearings ECA and ICASA 3 October 2013
Programme for Public Hearings ECA and ICASA 4 October 2013
[16 July 2013] We have prepared an overview of the proposed amendments to the ICASA Act set out in the ICASA Amendment Bill 2013 for your convenience and information.
[13 July 2013] The ICASA Amendment Bill B18 – 2013 has been formally introduced into the Parliamentary Process.
[18 May 2013] Cabinet announced on 16 May 2013 that it has approved the ICASA Amendment Bill for submission to Parliament. The relevant press release (source http://www.sanews.gov.za/south-africa/icasa-review-pipeline) is set out below:
Cabinet has approved a proposal to review some of the Independent Communications Authority of SA’s functions to make it more transparent and accountable.
Addressing a post Cabinet briefing on Thursday, acting Cabinet spokesperson Phumla Williams said the executive had approved the submission of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) Amendment Bill to Parliament.
The amendment of the Bill forms part of a platter of proposals contained in the National Development Plan, penned by Minister in the Presidency: National Planning Commission, Trevor Manuel.
The amendment comes after President Jacob Zuma anchored his State of the Nation Address on the NDP -which seeks to eliminate poverty and reduce inequality – in February, where he announced that most of the government programmes would be guided by proposals contained in the plan.
“The Amendment Bill responds to some of the issues in the NDP.
“The amendments of the Independent Communication Authority Act No. 13 of 2002 (ICASA Act) are underpinned by the need for institutional improvements to strengthen the independent Authority.
“This will be through the provision of clarity on aspects of its powers to align the Act more closely to the requirements of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and to improve its efficiency,” Williams said.
Williams said, however, that amendment should not be seen as a threat to the ICASA’s independence.
“This is with a view to improve accountability and transparency which will contribute to sound governance practices within ICASA.
“The importance of an independent and impartial regulator for the communications sector cannot be overemphasised.”
Williams said, meanwhile, that Cabinet had also approved the submission of the Electronic Communication Amendment Bill to Parliament.
“The Amendments seeks to deal with competition promotion limitation, access to electronic communications infrastructure, communication costs as well as improving turnaround time for consultative processes.
“The Amendment Bill aligns the Act with broad-based black economic empowerment legislation; refines licensing issues; improves competition provisions; removes regulatory bottlenecks and provides for matters connected to this,” Williams said.
___[11 January 2013] Deadline for comment has been extended to 30 January 2013.
We have prepared an Overview of proposals set out in the ICASA Amendment Bill 2012.
___[23 November 2012] The Department of Communications has released the ICASA Amendment Bill, 2012 for comment. Submissions are due by 10 January 2013.