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[rpd] New Policy Proposal Received - "AFRINIC Policy Development Process Bis (AFPUB-2017-GEN-002-DRAFT-01)
dewole at forum.org.ng
Sat Apr 29 14:42:21 UTC 2017
Good day AFRINIC PDWG Members,
We have received a new policy Proposal - "AFRINIC Policy Development
Process Bis (AFPUB-2017-GEN-002-DRAFT-01)"
From the following authors:
(a) Komi Abel Elitcha | kmw.elitcha at gmail.com | Independent
(b) Arnaud A. A. AMELINA | amelnaud at gmail.com | TogoRER
(c) Honest Ornella GANKPA | honest1989 at gmail.com | Independent
(d) Alain P. AINA | Alain.Aina at wacren.net | WACREN
The proposal contents are below and published at
Please take some time to go through the proposal contents and provide
Submission Date: 27 April 2017
Komi Abel Elitcha | kmw.elitcha at gmail.com | Independent
Arnaud A. A. AMELINA | amelnaud at gmail.com | TogoRER
Honest Ornella GANKPA | honest1989 at gmail.com | Independent
Alain P. AINA | Alain.Aina at wacren.net | WACREN
Amends: Art. 3.0 of the Consolidated Policy Manual
1.0 Summary of the Problem Being Addressed by this Policy Proposal
The current Policy Development Process is shaped around a working group,
which is administered by two Chairs.
The working group operations rules are not clearly defined as for:
* Requirements for chairmanship
* Chairs roles and responsibilities
* How Chairs exercise their powers
* Chairs election
* Chairs resignation
* Working group code of conduct
The consensus process used by the working group for decision-making is
not defined, opening doors for interpretations and inactions.
The current process does not have provision for proposal adoption, which
induces duplication of proposals dealing with same problem, lack of
clarity of problem statements and proposals out of scope of the PDP. It
also does not define a clear method for moving proposals forward.
The current PDP does not have provision for board adopting policies as
per section 11.4 of the AFRINIC constitution in the varying of the process.
2.0 Summary of How this Proposal Addresses the Problem
This Policy proposal addresses these issues by:
Designing a policy development process around one Chair assisted by a
Defining the roles and responsibilities of the Chair and Vice-Chair;
Defining how Chair exercises his authority and powers;
Detailing the consensus process with regard to major and minor
objections and responsibility of the Chair of the working group in
gauging the consensus;
Providing with different phases for policy proposals: from adoption
till last call and ratification by the AFRINIC board of Directors;
Providing provision on how board adopts policy as per section 11.4 of
the constitution that is managed in varying the PDP.
Clarifying disputes and appeals mechanisms
This proposal replaces section 3.0 of the CPM (The Policy Development
Process) entirely as follows:
3.0 The Policy Development Process
The Policy Development Process covers the development and modification
of policies for proper and responsible usage and management of Internet
Number Resources within the AFRINIC service region.
The PDP is shaped to come up with clear, technically effective and
Policies for Internet number resource management must be evaluated for
technical effectiveness against three requirements: conservation,
aggregation, and registration.
Changes to the Policy Development Process itself will also follow the
Internet number resource policies are distinctly separate from AFRINIC
general business practices and procedures. General business practices
and procedures are not within the purview of the Policy Development Process.
Internet number resources consist of Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4)
address space, Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) address space, and
Autonomous System (AS) numbers.
3.2 Policy Development Principles
All policies are developed by the Internet community following four
principles: openness, transparency, fairness and bottom-up. The Internet
community initiates and discusses the policy proposals. If consensus is
reached on a given policy proposal, it is recommended to the AFRINIC
Board of Directors to be ratified as an effective policy to be
implemented within AFRINIC region.
All policies are developed in an open forum in which anyone may
participate. There are no qualifications for participation.
All aspects of the Policy Development Process are documented and
publicly available via the AFRINIC website. The discussions are publicly
archived. All procedures that are developed to implement the policy are
documented by AFRINIC and are publicly available.
The policies are to ensure fair distribution of Internet number
resources and facilitate the operation of the Internet within AFRINIC
The community drives policy development.
3.3 Operations of the Policy Development Working Group (PDWG)
The Policy Development Working group (PDWG) provides an open public
forum to discuss Internet numbers resource management policies and
related topics of interest to AFRINIC and the Internet community in the
AFRINIC service region. PDWG sessions are held at AFRINIC Public policy
meetings. Between meetings, discussions continue via the Resource Policy
Discussions (rpd) mailing list. The PDWG is open to all interested
The Policy Development Working Group is primarily administered by one
Chair and one vice-Chair. The WG Chair and Vice-Chair perform a vital
role in managing the working group. The effectiveness of the PDWG is
dependent on the active participation of the Chair and the Vice-Chair.
The PDWG Chair and Vice-Chair undertake their work on a volunteer basis.
The PDWG Chair is responsible for coordinating the activities of the
policy development working group. He guides a policy proposal through
its different phases in order to gauge consensus.
The Vice-Chair helps the WG Chair to coordinate the activities of the
policy development working group.
The WG Chair and Vice-Chair are expected to attend all AFRINIC Public
Policy Meetings. The WG Chair and Vice-Chair must remain subscribed to
the AFRINIC Policy Discussion mailing list( rpd at afrinic.net) for the
duration of their term. Both the PDWG Chair and Vice-Chair must also be
subscribed to the AFRINIC member-discuss mailing list during their term.
The challenge of managing the policy development working group sessions
is to balance the need for open and fair consideration of the issues
against the need to make forward progress. The working group, as a
whole, has the final responsibility for striking this balance. The
Working Group Chair has the responsibility for overseeing the process.
To facilitate making forward progress, the Working Group Chair may wish
to decide to reject or defer the input from an individual, based upon
the following criteria:
The input pertains to a topic that already has been resolved and is
redundant with information previously available;
The input is new and pertains to a topic that has already been resolved,
but it is felt to be of minor import to the existing decision;
The input pertains to a topic that the working group has not yet opened
The input is outside of the scope of the working group.
Occasionally one or more individuals may engage in behavior on a mailing
list that, in the opinion of the WG Chair, is disruptive to the WG
process. Unless the disruptive behavior is severe enough that it must be
stopped immediately, the WG Chair should attempt to discourage the
disruptive behavior by communicating directly with the offending
individual. If the behavior persists, the WG Chair should send at least
one public warning on the RPD mailing list. As a last resort and
typically after one or more explicit warnings, the WG Chair may suspend
the mailing list posting privileges of the disruptive individual for a
period of not more than 30 days. Even while posting privileges are
suspended, the individual must not be prevented from receiving messages
posted to the list. Like all other WG Chair decisions, any suspension of
posting privileges is subject to appeal.
3.3.1 Responsibilities of PDWG Chair
The responsibilities of the AFRINIC PDWG Chair are listed below:
188.8.131.52 Before an AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting:
Introduce a policy proposal into the adoption phase
Announce policy proposals to the policy discussion mailing list
Discourages any behavior that jeopardizes open participation to policy
discussions, especially for newcomers.
Monitors discussions held on AFRINIC policy discussion mailing list (
rpd at afrinic.net)
Announces the call for presentation of policy proposals for Public
Policy Meetings on the policy discussion mailing list,
Read submitted proposals
Remain subscribed to AFRINIC RPD and member-discuss lists during his term.
At the AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting
Read initiators' slides to familiarize themselves with the details and
ensure it matches proposal text. In case of any difference, submission
of an updated version of the proposal on rpd list to notify the working
group is required, even if these changes will not be considered.
Create agenda presentation slides for the meeting with the AFRINIC staff.
Guide the consensus gauging process; announces the current phase of a
Read AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting minutes and makes corrections as
Present the policy discussion working group report to the AFRINIC Public
184.108.40.206 After a Public Policy Meeting:
Send report of Public Policy Meeting to the community and policy
discussion mailing lists including policy proposal discussion outcomes
and open action items.
Monitor discussion during the concluding phase for comments period.
Summarize discussions and, following the end of the call for comments,
post the decision regarding whether the proposal has reached rough
consensus or not.
The Chair may delegate tasks to Vice-Chair as necessary.
3.3.2 Responsibilities of PDWG Vice-Chair
Vice-Chair responsibilities include but are not limited to:
Attend at least one AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting held each year.
Remain subscribed to the policy discussion mailing list for the duration
of their time as Vice-Chair
Monitor remote chat-room discussions during the AFRINIC Public Policy
Undertake any of the tasks normally performed by the PDWG Chair when
requested. In the event that the PDWG Chair is unavailable to perform
some of his duties, the Vice-Chair will assume these responsibilities.
3.3.3 Electing the Chair and Vice-Chair
The AFRINIC community elects a policy development working group Chair
and one Vice-Chair for a two year term. The PDWG Chair and Vice-Chair’s
elections occur in alternate years.
The AFRINIC NomCom appoints the PDWG Chair and Vice-Chair using the
AFRINIC Staff sends a call for nominations to the policy development
mailing list ( rpd at afrinic.net). The call will contain:
Details of the duties of the position.
The closing date for nominations; 30 days from the date of the call
A request for a short biography and description of nominees.
A requirement that candidates for the Chair position should be active on
the AFRINIC policy mailing list and must have attended at least two (2)
AFRINIC Public Policy Meetings,
A requirement for candidates to confirm their ability and willingness to
commit to the responsibilities associated with the Chair and Vice-Chair
If at least one nomination is received by closing date, an election must
be held. The election must be held at the upcoming Public Policy Meeting
as the first item on the agenda.
Candidates will be invited to give a short speech. Voting will take
place by a count of a show of hands.
Only candidates who are present at the public policy meeting will be
included in the vote. If a current Vice-Chair stands for the position of
Chair and is elected, the newly vacant Vice-Chair position can be filled
by one of the remaining candidates for the Chair position or by a call
for volunteers at the public policy meeting.
There will be a handover period. The outgoing Chair will manage
proposals reaching consensus at the current Public Policy meeting to the
completion of the Policy Development Process.
3.3.4 Removing a PDWG Chair or Vice-Chair
If the PDWG Chair or Vice-Chair does not attend one in every two
consecutive AFRINIC Public Policy Meeting, the Chair or Vice-Chair will
be removed from their role. The process of electing a replacement will
Anyone may request the recall of a Working Group Chair at any time, upon
written request with justification to the AFRINIC Board of Directors.
The request must be supported by at least ten (10) other persons. The
AFRINIC Board of Directors shall appoint a recall committee, excluding
the persons requesting the recall and the Working Group Chair. The
recall committee shall investigate the circumstances of the request for
the recall and determine the outcome.
If the outcome is that the WG Chair or Vice-Chair has to be recalled
then the process of electing a replacement will then begin.
3.3.5 Resignation of a Chair or Vice-Chair
If a PDWG Chair resigns, the vice-Chair will assume the role of Chair
and nominate a member of the community to exercise the role of
Vice-Chair until the next Public Policy Meeting. This nomination has to
be approved through non-objection by the working group via the mailing
list. At least 30 days prior to the Public Policy Meeting, the AFRINIC
NomCom will initiate procedures for electing the new Chair.
If a Vice-Chair resigns, the Chair shall nominate a member of the
community to exercise the role of Vice-Chair until the next Public
Policy Meeting. This nomination has to be approved through non-objection
by the working group via the mailing list. At least one month prior to
the Public Policy Meeting, the AFRINIC NomCom will initiate procedures
for electing the new Chair.
If both Chair and vice Chair resign, The AFRINIC Ltd CEO shall lead the
appointment by the working group of an interim Chair via the mailing
list or at The Public Policy meeting.
The Interim Chair will act up to the election of the new Chair and shall
be assisted by AFRINIC staff.
4.0 Consensus inside the PDWG
Most of the decisions in the working group operations and discussions on
policy proposals are made through rough consensus, unless specified
The PDWG consensus process is a multi-stakeholder approach to
decision-making. The process is used to develop the best possible
resource management policies for the AFRINIC service region.
The consensus process begins when somebody proposes a new policy.
This discussion phase begins on the mailing list and continues during
the Public policy meetings.
4.1 Minor objections
A minor objection is one where the objector believes some problems may
occur for some participants in the group if the proposal goes forward.
The PDWG participants should work together to see if the proposal can be
modified to overcome minor objections.
However, it is not always possible to overcome these objections. In this
case, the Chair may ask the objectors if they are prepared to
acknowledge that the overall advantages of the proposal outweigh their
objections and are willing to set them aside.
4.2 Major objections
Major objections are serious and indicate a belief that major problems
will occur for parts of the community if the proposal goes forward;
therefore, the proposal cannot be adopted in its current format.
The Chair should devote sufficient time for the PDWG to discuss ways to
overcome major objections.
PDWG Participants, including the proponent, should work together to
develop solutions that overcome major objections.
Consensus is reached on a proposal if the PDWG is able to successfully
work through all objections in this way. It is not necessary for
everyone to agree with the proposal. ‘Rough consensus’ is the point
where all objections have been resolved or given due consideration and
the PDWG believes the benefits outweigh the disadvantages.
4.3 Reaching consensus
In the meeting the Chair may ask for a show-of-hands, or other
techniques, to gauge support for a policy proposal. The use of
show-of-hands or other techniques is not a vote. It is a way of broadly
measuring opinion and the Chair’s final decision takes many additional
factors into account, including earlier discussions on the mailing list.
The aim of the PDWG is to carefully consider all opinions before making
a decision. At the end of the discussion, the Chair will decide if the
working group has reached consensus.
Consensus is achieved when everyone consents to the decision of the
group. The decision may not be everyone’s first preference, but is
acceptable to all participants.
5.0 Public Policy Meeting
Public Policy Meeting means a meeting open to the community wherein
proposals for policies are discussed within the framework of the Policy
Development Process (PDP)
The agenda of the meeting shall be announced by the Chair of the PDWG on
the Resource Policy Discussion mailing list at least two weeks prior to
the meeting. No change can be made to a policy proposal within one week
of the meeting. This is so that a stable version of the policy proposal
can be considered at the meeting.
The WG Chair determines whether rough consensus has been achieved during
the Public Policy Meeting.
When a policy proposal has reached the Review Phase, it is placed on the
agenda of an open public policy meeting.
If the Chair can’t participate in meeting, the Vice-Chair will lead the
meeting assisted by AFRINIC staff.
If the Vice-Chair can’t participate in meeting, the Chair will lead the
meeting assisted by AFRINIC staff.
If WG Chair and Vice-Chair can’t participate to meetings, the working
group shall appoint one (1) person to lead the session and is assisted
by one AFRINIC staff.
While open discussion and contribution is essential to working group
success, the Chair is responsible for ensuring forward progress. When
acceptable to the WG, the Chair may call for restricted participation
(but not restricted attendance!) at Public Policy meetings for the
purpose of achieving progress. The Working Group Chair then has the
responsibility to refuse to grant the floor to any individual who is
unprepared or otherwise covering inappropriate material, or who, in the
opinion of the Chair is disrupting the WG process.
6.0 Policy proposals
Anyone can submit a policy proposal to PDWG Chair. One or all initiators
of a policy proposal have the option to remain anonymous. Hence PDWG
Chair has the responsibility to act as document editor or set a call for
a volunteer from the WG to act as document editor on the policy proposal.
A Document Editor is responsible for ensuring that the contents of the
document accurately reflect the decisions that have been made by the
6.1 Phases of a policy proposal
A policy proposal follows four phases during its evolution through
policy development process: Adoption Phase, Discussion Phase, Review
Phase and the Concluding Phase.
6.1.1 The Adoption Phase
During this phase, the PDWG Chair will assess the clarity and the
relevance of the problem statement in accordance to the scope of the PDP
and the existing policies.
PDWG Chair or AFRINIC staff can work with the initiator(s) to redefine
the problem statement if need be.
For policy proposals which are out of scope of AFRINIC PDP, or
addressing the same issue as another policy proposal already adopted,
the PDWG Chair shall dissuade the initiator(s) from submitting to the
In case of disagreement or doubt the PDWG Chair may consult the working
group on whether or not the working group is willing to adopt the
proposal for discussion based on its problem statement.
Once adopted by the working group, the initiator(s) grants all rights to
the working group and the proposal becomes a community document.
In all matters of intellectual property rights and procedures, the
intention is to benefit the community and the public at large, while
respecting the legitimate rights of others.
The adoption phase should last maximum of two weeks. At the term of two
weeks, based on consensus, PDWG Chair declares the beginning of the
Discussion phase or declares the rejection of the policy proposal.
The initiator(s) of the policy proposal can reformulate their problem
statement and go back to the adoption phase.
6.1.2 The Discussion Phase
Once the PDWG Chair declares the adoption of a policy proposal for
discussion, the Discussion Phase begins on the RPD Mailing List (
rpd at afrinic.net). The PDWG Chair should set the period for the
Discussion Phase and this must be for at least four weeks.
During the discussion phase, the working group evaluates the policy
proposal and comments are made. Politeness and courtesy must lead
discussions, PDWG Chair should emphasize this each time it is relevant.
At the end of the Discussion Phase, the PDWG Chair provides a summary of
the discussion highlighting the close and open issues.
Once the working group agrees on the summary, which can be edited
according to feedbacks, the PDWG Chair decides whether the policy
proposal should move to the next phase (Review Phase), go to an extended
discussion phase or should be withdrawn. The decision to move forward
will be announced on RPD mailing list.
If significant comments or modifications are suggested during the
Discussion Phase, the policy proposal initiators will review the
proposal and a new version will be published. A new Discussion Phase
will then start for the new version of the proposal. This new Discussion
Phase should last at least two weeks.
If the suggested comments or modifications are not so significant to
require a new Discussion Phase, the PDWG Chair can decide to move the
proposal to the next phase (Review Phase) with a new version of the
proposal incorporating the necessary changes.
Each version of the proposal is publicly archived to transparently show
the history of changes to the proposal and published on AFRINIC web site.
The new version of the policy proposal should be announced on AFRINIC
RPD mailing list and website before the proposal can be moved to the
The PDWG Chair shall request the AFRINIC Ltd CEO to conduct and publish
an impact analysis about the proposal before it can be moved to the
Review Phase. The goal of this analysis is to provide relevant
supporting information to facilitate the discussions about the proposal
and provide some projections about the possible impact if it were to be
accepted. This analysis will contain the following points:
AFRINIC Ltd’s understanding of the proposed policy
Impact on the registry and Internet Number Resources
Impact on AFRINIC Ltd’s operations/services
6.1.3 The Review Phase
The goal of this phase is to review the full draft policy proposal
compiled at the end of the Discussion Phase. Hence, the final
documentation of the proposal will lead to rough consensus; all
modifications made to that document should be transparent to the working
group. During the Review Phase, discussion of the draft proposal can
continue, also in the light of the impact analysis, and within the
context of the proposal, further modifications can still be suggested
regarding the draft proposal. The Review Phase should last for a maximum
of four weeks.
At the end of the Review Phase, the PDWG Chair determines whether the
working group has reached rough consensus. In the case the PDWG Chair
decides that consensus has not been reached, then the PDWG Chair can
send the draft proposal back to the Discussion Phase if the initiators
are willing to make an improvement of their proposal and make the
necessary changes according to the feedback received from the community.
A draft proposal sent back to discussion phase automatically lost its
status of draft proposal.
The PDWG Chair can also decide to have the draft proposal edited and
start a new Review Phase with a new version of the proposal or otherwise
the proposal shall be withdrawn.
6.1.4 The Concluding Phase
In the case, the Chair determines that the WG has reached consensus at
the end of the Review Phase, the PDWG Chair moves the draft proposal to
a "Last Call for Comments" and the Concluding Phase starts. The Last
Call period lasts at least two weeks. The Last Call shall be announced
on policy discussions mailing list.
The purpose of this Last Call period is to provide the community with a
final opportunity to comment on the draft proposal. This is especially
intended for those who missed the previous two phases and want to oppose
the proposal or make substantial remark. The "Last Call for Comments"
gives time to the community after the PDWG Chair declares rough
consensus at the end of the Review Phase so that suggestions for any
final changes or objections to the proposal can be sent to the WG
mailing list. At this stage, objections need to be justified just as in
the other phases for them to be taken into account.
At the end of the Last Call period, the PDWG Chair will assess the
feedback received during this period and decide whether consensus has
been achieved. If there is no feedback from the community at this stage,
this is regarded as consensus.
If rough consensus is achieved, the PDWG Chair will announce the
decision and initiate the process of the draft proposal ratification by
AFRINIC board of directors.
If consensus has not been achieved, the PDWG Chair can decide to either
send back the proposal to the previous phases of Discussion or Review,
otherwise the proposal shall be withdrawn.
The initiators of a policy proposal (or anyone else) are free to return
the proposal to the RPD mailing list for further discussion after a
6.2 Policy Ratification
After a draft proposal has reached rough consensus, AFRINIC board of
Directors have the obligation to check if process have been followed
In the case of a rejection, the AFRINIC board of directors must justify
and publish the reason on the resources policy discussion list (
rpd at afrinic.net) and on the AFRINIC website, and ask the working group
to rectify the issue.
After ratification, AFRINIC board of Directors, announce their decision
to the working group and this activates implementation of the policy by
7.1 Appealable Actions
7.1.1 Suspension of posting privileges
Anyone whose privileges of posting to the Resources Policy Discussion
mailing list have been suspended by the WG Chair may file an appeal
against the decision to the AFRINIC board of directors. The board shall
investigate the circumstances of the justification as prescribed and
determine the outcome.
7.1.2 During the Discussion Phase
During the Discussion Phase, anyone who has a complaint or other concern
about the policy proposal or how it is being handled on the policy
development mailing list should first raise the matter with the PDWG
Chair. If the dispute cannot be resolved with the PDWG Chair, the
appeals Procedure can be invoked.
7.1.3 During the Review & Concluding Phases
At these stages of the process – i.e. after the PDWG Chair has declared
initial consensus or the proposal is in Last Call – complaints should
not be about the policy proposal itself unless there are exceptional
Anyone who believes that the proposal has not been handled correctly or
that the PDWG Chair has made an incorrect determination of consensus
should first raise the matter with the PDWG Chair. If the dispute cannot
be resolved with the WG Chair, the Appeals Procedure can be invoked.
7.2 Appeals procedure
An appeal can only be filed if it is supported by three (3) individuals
from the Working Group who have participated in the discussions to an
Appeal committee appointed by the AFRINIC Board of Directors. The appeal
must be submitted within two weeks of the public knowledge of the
decision. The Appeal Committee shall issue a report on its review of the
complaint to the Working Group. The Appeal Committee may direct that the
Chair decision be annulled if the Policy Development Process has not
8.0 Varying the Process
8.1 Variance by the PDWG
The process outlined in this document may vary in the case of an
emergency. Variance is for use when a one-time waiving of some provision
of this document is required. The decision to vary the process is taken
by the Working Group Chair. There must be an explanation about why the
variance is needed. The discussion, review and concluding period shall
not be less than four weeks. If there is consensus, the policy is
approved and it must be presented at the next Public Policy Meeting.
8.2 Variance by the AFRINIC board of Directors
As per section 11.4 of the AFRINIC constitution, AFRINIC board of
Directors may adopt policies regarding the management of Internet number
resources where it considers that the same is necessary and urgent,
having regard to the proper and responsible usage of these resources.
The decision to vary the process is presented to the Working Group.
There must be an explanation about why the variance is needed. The Board
of Directors shall allow the working group to review the proposal for a
period of not less than two weeks.
While the board of Directors is encouraged to take into consideration
the comments and suggestions from this review, these comments and
suggestions are not binding.
The working group at the following public policy meeting will endorse
any such adopted policy as per section 11.5 of the bylaws,
4.0 Revision History
28 April 2017 Version 1 posted to rpd
This proposal is mainly based on the intensive discussions we had on the
current PDP during 2016 and 2017 on the RPD mailing list. It addresses
issues by referring to best practices from the IETF and the PDPs of
More information about the RPD