By JUDITH NAMUTOWE -
THE Government is in the process of signing a Statutory Instrument (SI) relating to licensing framework for the postal sector in the country.
The SI is expected to enable the Zambia Information and Communications Authority (ZICTA) to issue licenses to operators in postal and courier services industry.
ZICTA manager licensing and compliance Isaac Nonde said this in an interview on the sidelines of a half-day Postal Security Standards workshop in Lusaka on Tuesday.
The standards include mail security, mail operators, human resources and customs.
Mr Nonde, who said that the draft was currently with the Ministry of Justice, expressed hope that the SI could be signed by December this year.
He explained that once the SI was signed, standards for operators in the industry would become mandatory.
“We think that once the SI is signed, it will give the Authority powers to regulate the industry in security and quality of service.
Due to the absence of regulations and the new licensing framework, Industry Standards are the most readily available tool to immediately tackle postal security,” Mr Nonde said.
Mr Nonde also said that this would further compel operators to pay licensing fees in form of taxes to the treasury.
ZICTA has a legal mandate to regulate and protect the postal and courier services in an effort to protect the interests of users of postal and courier services.
Presenting a paper on the implementation of postal and courier security standards, ZICTA licensing manager postal and courier Brian Mwansa said they adopted an international standard which was developed by the Universal Postal Union (UPU) to be customised from an international standard to one that could be applied in Zambia.
“We have held a series of workshops and meetings and developed a draft Zambian Standards, which was circulated for public consultation in October 2013.
In March 2014, the Zambian Postal and Courier Security Standards were approved and published. So these standards are in effect but they are voluntary,” Mr Mwansa said.