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SOUTH AFRICA: "Secrecy Bill" Step Backwards for Africa

World  (tags: world, politics, South Africa, freedoms, 'HUMANRIGHTS!', 'CIVILLIBERTIES!', humanrights, society, news, africa )

- 2437 days ago -
Critics call it "the Secrecy Bill". And it comes at a time when several African countries are adopting promising new legislation on access to information. But campaigners say South Africa's draft Protection of Information Bill represents a step backwards.

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Carol H (229)
Friday September 16, 2011, 3:49 pm
noted, thank you Cal

pam w (139)
Friday September 16, 2011, 6:06 pm
What? Did George Bush & Dick Cheney get into power there?

Rose Becke (141)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 12:11 am

Alexandra Rodda (180)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 1:29 am
They proibably don't want people to find out about the worst of the apartheid era.

. (0)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 7:51 am
Alexandra, South Africa is no longer ruled by the white minority. Although reconciliation certainly has been promoted by the black majority leaders of that country today, I rather doubt their goal in promoting this legislation is to hide "the worst of the apartheid era." Since South Africa's leaders today were once victims of that apartheid era.

Past Member (0)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 8:09 am
Shouldn't secrecy be limited to core state bodies in the security sector such as the police, defence and intelligence agencies?

Jim P (3257)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 11:20 am
"It's a myth to think these are laws for the media or the elite, because frankly those groups already have access to information," she says.

"We have seen (access to information laws) used in transformative ways all over the world.

"We've seen people use it to promote their educational rights in various countries. We've seen it used around health care. We've seen it used to protect children in orphanages. There've been hosts of great uses of the right to information to protect the environment," Neuman said.

She says an essential component of expanding rights is to establish processes by which governments provide information and where they fail, to give citizens a clear and accessible way to demand it.

It is ironic that South Africa is moving in precisely the opposite direction.

Ty, Cal.

Robert O (12)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 12:43 pm
Thanks Cal.

Brenda Towers (0)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 2:08 pm
Noted. Thankyou.

Bruce Van Tassell (7)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 2:27 pm
If indeed it is ever going to happen it is time for Africa to be taking as many steps forward as possible not taking ones backwards. Granted it has been the long adjustment to cruel exploytive colonial aftermath that has held Africa, now those very same countries must help Africa unite in prosperity.

Roger G (154)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 3:03 pm

Mary Donnelly (47)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 3:37 pm
Thanks Cal.

Gary L (138)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 9:26 pm

Ellen m (215)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 10:57 pm
Its the same the world over...greed.
Bad press and guarded information could cost many money should it become public.
Africa just can't catch a break.

Past Member (0)
Saturday September 17, 2011, 11:04 pm
Dirty deeds and corruption - all best done in dark corners. It's called government. SSDD

Thea Hollebone (4)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 12:42 am
What are they afraid of???

R T (14)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 1:21 am
How else can they protect corrupt government officials?
Is this another step towards a dictatorship, bearing in mind that the Chief Justice is a Presidential appointment not popular with legal brains.
Just another example of the government using its majority to force through legislation with no regard for public input & feelings.
When you change the cover of a book, it is only the cover that changes.

Make a difference, plant a tree.

Past Member (0)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 2:19 am
How come this sounds so familiar?

I live in America.

Yvonne F (181)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 4:09 am
It's a shame. This could become a lovely country, but in order to be that it needs to address its equality issues. Unfortuantely, it does not seem as anybody is working towards that!

Ralph F (66)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 5:35 am
Wrong direction, indeed. Thanks for the post.

Nola g (5)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 5:39 am
thank you for the article.

Peter B (54)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 10:15 am
noted and shared thanks Cal

Jeanne M (84)
Sunday September 18, 2011, 7:21 pm
A government hoarding secrets and spreading misinformation and using 'national security' as a weapon against its own people - gee, I wonder where I've heard of that before.
Interesting post - thank you.
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