GOVERNMENT DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION DRAFT BILL RELEASED FOR PUBLIC CONSULTATION
Minister for Information and Communications Technology, Hon. Timothy Masiu, today announced the release of the Digital Transformation Bill for public consultation. When passed by the PNG Parliament, the Bill will usher a much more coordinated and systematic approach in the procurement, deployment and the use of digital technologies within the public sector.
Minister Masiu, MP is humbled by Prime Minister Hon. James Marape’s vote of trust and faith in the people of South Bougainville under his leadership to have him maintain his ministerial portfolio as indicated in the most recent Cabinet reshufﬂe. Minister Masiu said that it is time to get on with business and he has directed the Department of Information and Communication Technology to prepare and release the ﬁrst draft of the Government Digital Transformation Bill 2021 on its website for public consultation. Minister Masiu has targeted the ﬁrst quarter of the Parliament sitting in 2021 to take the Bill to Parliament.
“It is imperative that stakeholders within the Government machinery and persons interested in the Government’s digital transformation and digital economy agenda have given access to the draft Bill to provide feedback”. “While it may be conventional that consultative workshops are conducted to gauge views of stakeholders, the ﬁrst draft of the Government Digital Transformation Bill 2021 has been uploaded on the Department’s website, accessible at www.ict.gov.pg to allow for review and comments from as many stakeholders as much as possible. Subsequent drafts will take into consideration comments from stakeholders, which should reach the Department no later than end of February 2021”.
“Essentially the Bill will anchor the functions and powers of my Department of Information and Communication Technology as the Government’s ICT central coordinating agency. It will also provide for standards, speciﬁcations and guidelines on government digital infrastructure, digital services, data governance and all aspect of digital government across Whole of government”.“
As I have expressed in my earlier Press Release, I am delighted that after the Bill’s passage, all government ofﬁcial business will by law be now required to be communicated through ofﬁcial government email domains and not through public email domains. All Government Departments will also be required by the Bill to have ofﬁcial websites using the government domain .gov.pg make public information accessible to citizens whilst maintaining classiﬁcation of government data from Restricted Top Secret, Conﬁdential and Open Public Data.”
“To address uncoordinated ICT projects that has created government information systems silos amongst public bodies and impeded efﬁcient service delivery over the years, this law will empower my Department to issue a ‘Certiﬁcate of Compliance’ as a prerequisite for government ICT project funding consideration.”
“As we brace ourselves in the 2021 ﬁscal year and try to overcome the aftermath of social and economic challenges of the ﬁrst wave of covid-l9 pandemic, we are also reminded to remain vigilant for any oncoming waves that we have heard are affecting other Western countries. Hence, the essence of embracing the beneﬁts of ICT in service delivery in our path to digitally transform PNG into a digital economy can never be more signiﬁcant”.
“I encourage all ICT stakeholders and citizens to ﬁnd time to maximize the beneﬁts of technology to access the draft Bill online and provide feedback”.
This article first featured on the PNG Department of Information & Communications Technology facebook page.