December 5-11, 2011: By the end of 2012, companies should be able to set up websites with almost any address as long as they can lay a legitimate claim to the domain name….. In Africa, control of the .africa domain name is at the centre of a tussle between the Africa Union Commission and outfits such as the DotConnectAfrica Organisation (DCA). The East African spoke to the DCA boss on who will control .africa.
NewsPaper version of Q&A: Read here…
Q. You have openly criticized the AU leadership on this matter. What is it that you want done?
A. “Giving the AU an upper hand in managing of the domain name raises conflict of interest issues , as some players in this process are planning to pre-qualify organization that will apply for .africa, while they themselves have vested interest in the .africa TLD, because they floated themselves .africa proposals of their own, and have also openly identified with some prospective applicants.
A. The controversy emerged from a plan by the Africa Union Commission to make the .africa, .afrique and .afriqia, all similar name strings unavailable by including it in the list of reserved names, so as to frustrate the hopes of genuine applicants like DCA. The AU had asked Icann to reserve the names. Such a proposal is a disingenuous attempt to afford special legislative protection to the AU to own these strings through a method of bypassing the formal application process of the Icann new generic top level domains (gTLDs).