ICT Practitioners Bill 2018 is Back with More Controversial Clauses

ICT Bill 2018

ICT Bill 2018Some of you may have seen the ICT Practitioners Legislative Proposal, 2018 that has been doing rounds across social media and chat platforms. Similar to ICT, finance or any other high-profile Proposal, the ICT proposition, which was filed by an unnamed member evokes several questions and inputs, some of which have outrightly disregarded its suggestions as they are too general or limiting.

Generally speaking, the Proposal’s parts put forward suggestions for the establishment of the ICT practitioners institute, registration of ICT practitioners, licensing of ICT practitioners, enforcement of ICT policies, financial provision, as well as miscellaneous provisions such as regulations and transition.

According to this LinkedIn post that has also been studied by persons who are well-versed with the proposal, the definition of an ICT practitioner is not specific enough. According to the bill, an ICT practitioner is ‘a person registered to practice ICT as the case may be. For a few or gain either cash or cash.’ The scope of this definition is reportedly too broad.

Secondly, the bill appears to hinder the trade of ICT practitioners by proposing a series of barriers that may inhibit effective conduction of their mandate and businesses. For instance, there are several hurdles to jump during a) registration and b) licensing, some of which are not explicitly stated. Furthermore, it has also been noted that the provisions for registration have been replicated from the Advocates Act, which should not be the case as the skills needed in the two industries are vastly different.

Perhaps the most upsetting issue about the registration clause is the need for registration for foreign ICT consultants.

ICT Academic Papers

To quote the bill, “A person shall be eligible for registration under this Act as an ICT practitioner if the person is: a holder of at least bachelor’s degree in ICT related field including computer science, information technology, telecoms, computer engineering from a recognized university; a holder of at least a bachelor’s degree in electrical and electronics engineering, mathematics or physics and has at least 2 years post qualification experience in ICT field; holder of a diploma in ICT related in computer science, IT, telecoms of computer engineering with 5 years experience in the ICT field; any other bachelor’s degree with more than 5 years post qualification experience in ICT; and lastly, has demonstrated expertise, innovation or competence in ICT as may be determined by the Council.”

The qualifications above insist for post-college experience, which is challenging to achieve as one may not be able to gain field competence without a license.

We will report its progress in the future as more industry players lobby for it to be killed.