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Tribunal commences public hearing to validate rules

A  tribunal charged with the responsibility of settling disputes in the communication and multimedia sector has embarked on a countrywide excise of collecting views from the public to validate rules governing its operations.

The  Communications and Multimedia Appeals Tribunal, rules 2019, once validated will according to the board go a long way in making the rules all-inclusive and effective for public service use.

The  rules have among other provisions, spelt out procedures of lodging, serving, processing and settling complaints as well as appeal mechanisms and fees charged.

The exercise will also serve to popularise the tribunal that many are not aware of its existence and mandate.

“We are up and running but we need rules to guide our operations. We have come up with draft rules that need to be subjected to public participation before they can become operational,” said the tribunal chair, Ms. Anne  Mwangi.

She  was  speaking on Tuesday at Whispers Park Cultural hall in Nyeri Town during the first session of the public hearing forums.

Ms. Mwangi said once the exercise is over, the tribunal will review the document to incorporate the inputs of the stakeholders before it is tabled on the floor of the national assembly to be operationalised.

She said the tribunal once fully operational with the new rules will help decongest the courts as it will have jurisdiction as the first recourse to adjudicate on media and communication related disputes.

The Chair added that the tribunal also acts as an appellant to determine appeals from decisions of regulators and service providers in the telecoms sector in order to also protect the rights of service providers.

She said currently the tribunal is not very busy as it seeks to promote its existence.

Ms. Mwangi reported some of the cases that have been filed with the tribunal are complaints against media houses, mobile  service providers and appeals against Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).

By  Samuel  Waititu

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