Malawi MPs send back electronic transaction bill to House committees: To regulate online content

Legislators on Wednesday sent back a comprehensive Electronic Transaction Bill, that would fight cyber crime, regulate electronic money transactions and regulate online publications, among others if passed into law.

 Members of parliament want further input in the bill

Members of parliament want further input in the bill

Most MPs praised the government for the Bill which they said is very comprehensive but needed technical input from the Media and Communications committee, the Budget and Finance committee and Legal committee.

The members of parliament also advised the government to consult and seek input from experts like computer experts, media experts and others.

If passed, for instance online publication Nyasa Times and its editor and other online editors would be compelled to register so that they take responsibility for defamation and character assassination cases.

Some members of parliament also said the regulated online publications would now attract massive advertisements as is the case with traditional newspapers as they will now have legal framework which is lacking now.

One legislator explicitly singled out Nyasa Times during the debate of the bill, saying although it has accurate and factual editorial content, comments under stories are always defamatory and the injured party would now be able to take action.

Under the Electronic Transactions Bill, the DPP led government is seeking to crack down on content of the internet including social media platforms such as Facebook, Instragram and Twitter.

The Bill seeks to tighten control of bloggers, online media, especially news websites, by making online news editors and social media commentators of such content liable for any publications which might threaten public order and national security.

But the Bill has not specified what the meaning of “public order and national security” as well as “facilitate technical restriction to conditional access to online communication” when it comes to transmission of online public information.

There are fears that in a bid to “protect public order and security” as stated in Section 28 (1) (e), government could shut down online social media platforms such as Facebook, Instragram and Twitter using such legislation.

The bill also seeks to employ cyber inspectors, among others to check cyber crime and protect children from pornography and unnecessary stocking.

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Oliver Twist
Guest

Are we going back to Kamuzu days??? Don’t pretend to be clever, we are watching you. This is your last allowance to eat in parliament. We did not put you in parliament to seat PHWIIIIIIIIi and cast RACIST remarks and claim that you are HOUNARABLE!!! Everything, you are just copping. How many Bills are you going to pass before you come and hounor your promises that you lied to us in the constituencies????? We will also pass our Bill as Voters to remove or recall you anytime deemed unsuccessfull to us from the Constituencies.

Kumpwepe
Guest
Ref. No. C 169/E/VI Ministry of Justice Draft: Electronic Transactions Bill, 2015(Cabinet) (Subject to change) Author: Kelious Mlenga 30 January, 2015 – ELECTRONIC TRANSACTIONS BILL, 2015 MEMORANDUM This Bill seeks to provide a legal framework which will enable the development of the information society in Malawi within a legal framework. The existent framework does not provide economic actors and citizens with a secure and reliable legal environment in spite of their vital importance to the development of electronic transactions. The Bill complements the Communications Act (Cap 68:01 of the laws of Malawi) in regulating the information and communication technology (“ICT”)… Read more »
Peter
Guest

The actions of cabinet in rejecting ATI us a classical example of actions likely to disturb public order! will our police arrest the wayward ministers? What should be done to these ministers cconsidering that their action is the cause of growing anger among people which can lead to public disorder?

muona
Guest

Thats try and error government musova

Rights
Guest

I feel if this bill passes it means we will be robbed of some of our birth rights as well. Actually is this not in conflict with freedom of expression. My foot, why not deal with access to imfo bills. Why are these guys are bringing oppressive bills. Can someone school me on these issues? What will be the benefit of all this shift. ? Can someone explain please?

matombodya
Guest

Tiye nawoni amationjezadi amenewa. Just because they can write about someone something and post; they have no regard for the injured person. They need to be regulated indeed

The Analyst
Guest
…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… So you want to stop Nyasatimes from posting our comments or want to track down n trace The Analyst, Kenkkk, Nabanda, Mirrella K, Levelheaded, Sapitwa, mtumbuka1, etc for telling you you are stupid? But what are you, if you behave such? “Is it not better to be hurt by the truth than be comforted with a lie?.” – Khaled Hossein (Afghan-born American Novelist) Inu izi simukudziwa bwanji? Know this that it is our responsibility to make sure you people behave well using our right to call you stupid, foolish, useless, dunderheads, good-for-nothing fornicators e.t.c. Nde tiyeni tisasakanesakane iai! …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….… Read more »
Dusty
Guest

Vindere va MPs,you want to shut our mouths, you don’t want us to speak out minds out.

Sapitwa
Guest

Rights everyone has. A right to protection from defamation by other character assassins. There are too many obscene comments which should not have been published at all. This is welcome!

WAKUDA KAMANGA
Guest

Zaziiiii

wpDiscuz

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