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East African Legislative Assembly MPs root for electronic transactions Bill

BUSINESS
By Philip Mwakio | March 1st 2015

Regional legislators will from next week tour the EAC States to collect stakeholders’ views and submissions on the envisaged East African Community Electronic Transactions Bill 2014. East African Legislative Assembly (Eala) said the visit which involves the Committee on Communication, Trade and Investment starts today, ending on Thursday.

The Committee chaired by Uganda’s Mukasa Mbidde, has split into two groups to be more effective. Members will undertake simultaneous tour of the capitals. “The first group shall visit Dar es Salaam, Nairobi and Kampala while the second group will be in Bujumbura, Kigali and Kampala,” Eala said in a press statement.

Stakeholders to be visited include ministries responsible for ICT, finance, trade, commerce and tourism. Others are the offices of the Attorney General and the Law Reform Commissions as well as the Law Societies and enforcement agencies.

The MPs are also expected to meet representatives of the private sector including the East African Business Council and the respective private sector federations in the partner States. Both groups then converge in Kampala, Uganda on March 4, 2015, to consider the views and synthesise the input into a report.

The Bill was introduced as a private member’s Bill at the recent sitting in Arusha by Dr James Ndahiro. “The Bill aims at making provision for the use, security, facilitation and regulation of electronic communications and transactions to encourage the use or e-government service and to provide for related matters,” noted the regional parliament.

In May last year, the East African Payments System was launched in Nairobi - integrating Real Time Gross Settlement systems in the partner States. This has eased realtime transfer of funds by banks across the region.

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