Smit calls for urgent Electronic Transaction Bill approval

19 Jun 2019 18:20pm
WINDHOEK, 19 JUN (NAMPA) – The Electronic Transaction Bill (ETB) is long overdue given the developments in the financial sector said Popular Democratic Movement (PDM)’s Member of Parliament, Nico Smit, calling for its urgent approval.
It is aimed to provide for a general framework for the promotion of the use of electronic transactions in Namibia.
Smit made these remarks while contributing to the Bill’s debate in the National Assembly on Tuesday.
He said the ETB repeals the Computer Evidence Act of 1985, which has proven to be completely inadequate to regulate transactions and to safeguard the admissibility of digital documents and correspondence in legal proceedings, either civil or criminal.
“Given the developments in e-commerce and financial services based on so-called digital channels, there is no doubt that this particular Bill is long overdue,” he stressed.
He stressed that the absence of a legal framework for digital transactions is mostly seen in the way the private sector has attempted to establish a basis for recognition of digital transactions and communication.
In this regard, the only protected rights are those of the bank, while the client has to take it or leave it.
This asymmetrical relationship, he noted, will end once the ETB becomes law.
He went on to say that it dovetails with multiple sections of the legislation that are essential to the country’s business industry as well as the government.
“This legislation is a priority and has implications in all aspects of business transactions and for private individuals confronted by ever increasing e-services,” Smit said.