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Comment Sought on Postal Services Amendment Bill

November 14, 2017

Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services

The Draft Postal Services Amendment Bill has been published for comment.

The telecommunications and postal services department published the proposed legislation in Government Gazette 41246.

The draft bill flows from the National Integrated ICT Policy White Paper.

It seeks to:

• amend the Postal Services Act, 1998, so as to amend and insert certain definitions;
• substitute the word regulator for authority wherever it appears in the Act, to provide for the regulation of the reserved and unreserved postal services, to provide for the regulation of extra-territorial offices of exchange;
• provide for a new licensing framework;
• provide for the national addressing policy approach for the assignment of addresses in the rural and traditional communities and the development and maintenance of national address database, to provide for the clear process in the development of philatelic products, to add a number of objects;
• provide for the expansion of services by SAPO creating new generating revenue streams;
• amend and repeal certain sections in line with the ICASA Amendment Act, the Post and Telecommunications Related Matters Act, the South African Postbank Limited Act and the South African Post Office SOC Ltd Act; and
• provide for matters connected therewith.

The draft bill seeks to align the Postal Services Act with the ICT White Paper.

Comment is invited within 30 calendar days of the date of publication.

The department also published:

• Notice 1252 in Gazette 41243 – Final ICT Small, Medium and Micro-Enterprise Development Strategy- approved by cabinet on 1 November 2017;
• Notice 887 in Gazette 41242 – National e-Strategy Digital Society South Africa;
• Notice 886 in Gazette 41241 – National e-Government Strategy and Roadmap;
• Notice 1246 in Gazette 41237 – amendments to Alternative Dispute Resolution Regulations.

Meanwhile, the department recently provided parliament with a progress report on the implementation of the Rapid Deployment Policy.

The department plans to engage with Strategic Integrated Project 15 stakeholders early next year on the detailed implementation plan.

The Rapid Deployment Coordinating Centre will be set up by the end of March 2018 and a policy direction will be issued to ICASA.