Telecoms Director, Bennet Thomas has said that the Electronic Telecommunications Bill will address some areas which have not been legislated before.
“The Bill itself addresses some new areas which have never before existed in the previous legislations, but it also clarifies and enhances existing matters under the Telecommunications Act,” Thomas stated during a programme on DBS Radio this week.
According to Thomas, the Telecommunications Act was enacted in 2000.
“It is 22 years now and it means that technology has advanced significantly, things have changed,” he stated. “It is more than urgent now to update the legislation, to ensure that we incorporate all those changes.”
Thomas also underscored the need to put supporting legislation in place to facilitate the merging of telecommunications and Information Communication Technologies (ICT’s).
“So things are changing drastically and there is a need as we move into our digital transformation in our economy, that those kinds of legislations are incorporated, and we’ll definitely take advantage rightly or wrongly because of those new developments,” he said.
Meanwhile, Executive Director of the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (NTRC), Craig Nesty said over the past few years the NTRC has gone on a drive to increase consumer awareness and to advise consumers in order to utilize the complaint process.
He explained that prior to 2017-2018 the NTRC received one or two complaints a year.
“In 2019 we had 20 complains and 2020 we had about 25 and those are people actually taking the time of to fill in the forms, document what their issue is, put down all of the salient facts and go back to the provider and say, this is an official complaint I would like you to address this matter,” Nesty stated. “We had a number of resolutions to these complaints and a number of consumers have been satisfied by that process.”
Nesty pointed that moreover, sometimes once the complaint reaches the provider it doesn’t even escalate back to the NTRC and the provider then settles that issue.
“Say 6 out of 10 times, they would settle that issue before coming back to the NTRC to have a more formal process,” he said.