– Written Submissions

NAB Sumbission on the Universal Serivce and Access Fund

ICASA poses questions and requires additional information from the NAB

On 12 to 14 March 2008, ICASA invited stakeholders to participate in oral hearings, at the ICASA offices, in respect of draft regulations to prescribe annual contributions of the licencee's licenced activity to the Universal Service and Access Fund. The draft regulations were promulgated in terms of section 89 read with section 95(1) and section 4 of the Electronic Communications Act (the EC Act), and section 4(3)(j) of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa Act (the ICASA Act)(the draft regulations. The NAB was scheduled to make its oral submission on 13 March 2008. During the hearings, the ICASA panel posed two questions, which came as a result of    issues the NAB raised in its oral submission. The NAB was requested to respond in writing within two weeks.

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NAB Submission in respect Technical Standards for Electronic Telecommunications Equipment

On 7 February 2008 the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) published a General Notice (No 215 of 2008) in Government Gazette No 30753 (the Gazette). In terms of this notice, ICASA set out its intention to make regulations in respect of technical standards for electronic telecommunications equipment in terms of sections 35(1) and 36(1) of the Electronic Communications Act ("the ECA"), and inviting interested persons to submit comments by 6 March 2008. The NAB submitted its written submission.

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Regulations to the Universal Service Fund (USF)

The NAB has a concern with the literal implementation of section 89 of the EC Act, which requires all licencees to make a contribution to the Universal Service Fund. Currently, broadcasting licencees are contributing to the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA).

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Amendment of the Electronic Communications Act 36 of 2005

The Department of Communications together with the Portfolio Committee on Communictions published an Amendment Bill of the   Electronic Communications 36 of 2005. The object of the Bill was to amend the Electronic Communications Act, 2005, so as to empower the Minister to issue an additional policy direction; and to provide for matters connected therewith. The NAB submitted separate written representations to the DoC, and Parliament, as the due dates for submission were not the same.  Subsequently, the NAB participated in oral representations before the Portfolio Committee on Communicastions on 29 October 2007.  One of the key issues broadcasters objected to was the inclusion of the definition of "public entity" in the Bill.  Including the definition of public entity in the Amendment BIll would give unintended results, as the NAB believes it is not the intention of the DoC to have all entities listed under schedule 2 and 3 of the PFMA to be governed by the EC Act. 

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Films and Publications Amendment Bill

The amendment process of the Films and Publications legislation has been on going for some time.  The Department of Home Affairs published the second draft of the Bill for public comments, which was followed by oral hearings before Select Committee on Social Services on 16 October 2007. The NAB’s concerns on the Bill still centered on the Constitutionality the Bill.  The NAB submitted its written submission, and participated in oral hearings before the Select Committee on Social Services. view full article

General Terms and Conditions of Individual and Class Licences

On 30 August 2007, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (The Authority) published its intention to prescribe the general terms and conditions of the licences (the draft terms and conditions) in terms of Chapter 3 of the Electronic Communications Act 36 of 2005 (The EC Act), in Government Gazette 30246, Notice 1084. 

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The Minister's Policy Directives

On 17 September 2007, the Minister of Communications, Minister Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri, published Policies and Policy directions drafted in terms of section 3(1) and (2) of the EC Act.


This came after a public consultative process the DoC conducted on draft Policies and Policy Directions.  In its written submission, the NAB outlined that it supported the Minister's proposed policy directions which stated that in preparation for the national radio frequency plan, or appropriate modification to any existing radio frequency plan, ICASA must be guided by the decisions to be taken at the World Radio Conference 2007(WRC-07).  The NAB further added that the Minister should further direct ICASA to also take into account the decision of the Regional Radio Communication Conference 2006 (RRC-06), regarding radio spectrum frequency, when preparing the national radio frequency plan.

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Draft Interconnection and Facilites Leasing Regulations

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) published notice number 898 of 2007, in government gazette number 30091, dated 24 July 2007 (the notice). In the notice, ICASA invited interested persons to submit written representations to its intention to prescribe interconnection and facilities leasing regulations. Interested persons had up to 03 September to submit their written submissions. The NAB made a written submission in this regard. This process was followed by an invitation for parties to participate in oral hearings by ICASA. The oral hearings were scheduled to take place   on 11 October 2007 to 15 0ctober 2007 view full article

Draft Regulations for End-User and Subscriber Service Charters

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (the Authority) published  notice number 851 of 2007, in government gazette number 30073, dated 13 July 2007 (the notice). The notice invited interested persons to submit written representations to the Authority’s intention to make regulations in respect of end-user and subscriber service charters for postal, broadcasting electronic communications network services and electronic communications services licencees (the draft regulations). The deadline for written submissions was no later than 16H00 on 24 August 2007. The NAB submitted its written representation.

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The Astronomy Geographic Advantage Bill (AGA Bill)

The Constitution of South Africa requires that broadcasting in South Africa be regulated by an independent authority (ICASA). Certain provisions of the Astronomy Geographic Bill, however, give the Minister of Science and Technology and/or the Management Authority to be established in terms of section 15 of the Bill, and such Management Authorities will be vested with powers which will infringe on the powers of ICASA. In the NAB’s view, this is in contravention of Section 192 of the Constitution.

On 31 July 2007, the NAB made an oral submission before the Portfolio Committee on Science and Technology highlighting these issues. The submission was a follow up of a written submission the NAB had submitted on 18 July 2007 in response to the Astronomy Geographic Bill.

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