Secrecy bill 'fixed

2013-10-31 00:00

CAPE TOWN — The parliamentary ad hoc committee on the Protection of State Information Bill yesterday finalised its report on the so-called secrecy bill, but laughed off suggestions by the IFP.

Sparks flew when ANC members on the committee aired their disapproval of the IFP’s Dr Mario Ambrosini’s inputs.

Elleck Nchabaleng (ANC) repeatedly said “Ambrosini thinks he is God”. Chairperson of the committee Cecil Burgess (ANC) said Ambrosini, who attended the committee sessions despite suffering a lot of pain from terminal cancer, was “hard-headed”.

ANC MP Jerome Maake told Ambrosini it was only due to the goodwill of the committee that he could speak and added it was time to end this goodwill.

Burgess allowed the political intolerance in his committee despite the fact that precisely this refusal by ANC MPs to acknowledge oppositions members’ objections— specifically Ambrosini’s objections — had led to the committee’s previous report being referred back to them by President Jacob Zuma.

The DA, Cope and the ACDP’s inputs were eventually recorded yesterday, but only part of Ambrosini’s input was included. The ANC members used their majority vote to exclude the rest of Ambrosini’s objections because the committee thought it was factually wrong.

Ambrosini’s insistence that only he could decide what his opinion was, was laughed off by most of the committee members.

Thirty grammatical corrections were made to both the clauses that the president had pointed out, as well as to a slew of other clauses.

The DA, IFP and ACDP said all the changes went outside the brief by the government’s legal adviser that only the two clauses referred back by the president had to be amended.

The committee’s report will now be reviewed by the parliamentary programme committee.

If the ANC MPs stick to their pattern to date, the National Assembly will vote to accept the bill, after which Zuma will again have to consider signing the repressive secrecy bill into law.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.