Alert / Media Alert

We must protect our children from pests on social networks: Swaziland drafting cybercrime laws

MISA-Swaziland Alert
August 30 2013

Three pieces of model SADC law on cybercrime are being “transposed” into local Swaziland legislation at a two-day workshop in the landlocked southern African kingdom.

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has developed model law – template legislation that countries can use as a guide when drafting their own pieces of law – on “computer and cybercrime”, “data protection,” and “electronic transactions”.

The workshop is hosted by the ministry of information communication and technology, in partnership with the ministry of justice and constitutional affairs, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), and the European Union.

“We will eat and breathe cybercrime laws”, said ministry of ICT representative Bhekithemba Gama, who opened the workshop on behalf of ICT minister Winnie Magagula.

Gama said the minster was unable to attend because she was busy with national duties at Umhlanga, an annual ceremony known in English as the Reed Dance.

The laws “aim to prosecute the petty and malicious pests on social networks,” said Gama, reading the minister’s speech.

“Our cybercrime security needs to be visible and tough enough to deter would-be criminals.

“The law must be relevant to our culture and norms… our children must be protected from pests on social networks.”

The minister said “the country and the region is looking to us to deliver this legislation to the new parliament”.

Swaziland is holding its national election (or ‘secondary election’) on September 20. Primary elections took place on August 24. At primary elections one candidate is elected to represent the chiefdom in the secondary election, where one person from the Inkhundla (constituency) will be elected to the House of Assembly.

The election on September 20 is to elect 55 members to the 65-seat House of Assembly. The other ten members are appointed by the king. No members of the 30-person senate are elected by the people. Twenty senators are appointed by the king and ten are elected by members of the House of Assembly.

The cybercrime workshop, held at Sibane Hotel on 28 August and Royal Swazi Sun Hotel on August 29, forms part of a regional program known as HIPSSA.

HIPSSA is also referred to as: Support for harmonisation of the ICT policies in Sub-Saharan Africa. According to HIPSSA consultant and ITU expert Ida Jallow, the program is funded 90 percent by European Union, and 10 percent by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). ITU are the “implementing partner” of the program.

Click on the below links to read more about Swaziland’s proposed cyber-security legislation:

‘Internet security and online business discussed in Swaziland’

‘Data Protection legislation on its way to Swazi parliament’

‘Pornography, racism and genocide: cybercrime laws discussed in Swaziland’

Click here to view the SADC model law on data protection

Click here to view SADC model law on computer and cybercrime

Click here to view SADC model on electronic transactions and electronic commerce

For comments or queries, please contact:
Vuyisile Hlatshwayo
MISA-Swaziland National Director
Email: misa.nd@realnet.co.sz

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