As many of you are aware, there have been several new developments on the .AFRICA front over the past several days, indeed the past few hours. Here is an updated status report:
On 3 March 2016 the ICANN Board passed a resolution confirming that the DCA Trust (DCA) application for .AFRICA did not have sufficient government support as required by the Applicant Guidebook. As a result the DCA application has been rendered ineligible for further review or evaluation.
The ICANN Board then authorised the CEO and President to proceed with the delegation of .AFRICA to be operated by the ZACR pursuant to the Registry Agreement signed on 24 March 2014.
Information concerning the resolution can be found here.
This resolution constitutes an important milestone in the progress of the .AFRICA project and confirms our longstanding belief that DCA’s application was unwarranted and illegitimate.
It appears that DCA is not prepared to let the matter lie. Contrary to their contractual waiver, DCA has now approached the US (California) courts for assistance, citing a number of unsubstantiated and spurious claims against ICANN, ZACR and the AUC.
On 27 January 2016, a California court dismissed an attempt by DCA Trust to seek a temporary restraining oder (TRO) against ICANN preventing the delegation of .AFRICA to the ZACR.
DCA has persisted with their unlawful challenge against ICANN, including an attempt to join ZACR in the US based legal proceedings. An overview of this legal process, including ICANN’s application to have the matter dismissed can be found here.
A US district court is scheduled to hear arguments on DCA’s motion for a preliminary injunction on the 4th of April 2016. In an unwarranted, but unsurprising, move yesterday (5 March 2016) DCA obtained a temporary restraining order (TRO) against ICANN, preventing any delegation of .AFRICA until the 4th of April hearing date.
We would like to join the ZACR in assuring our partners and stakeholders that we are doing everything within our ability to ensure that .AFRICA is launched for the benefit of the African and global Internet communities as soon as possible. In doing so, we will continue to provide all reasonable assistance to the ZACR, AUC and ICANN, if and where required.
We are extremely honoured to be assisting the African community in taking up its rightful place on the global Internet.