Editors 'broken' at passing of bill
Cape Town - Editors are "broken inside" after the National Assembly approved the controversial protection of state information billl, SA National Editors' Forum (Sanef) chairperson Mondli Makhanya said on Tuesday.
"All of us here, we are broken inside," said Makhanya, who was surrounded by the editors of some of South Africa's largest news organisation on the steps outside the National Assembly.
"We never thought we would come here dressed in black to witness the Constitution of our country being betrayed by those who built it."
Makhanya said the battle against the bill was not over and that editors would work with unions and civil society to fight it.
He said he had hoped the consciences of ANC MPs would get the better of them as they voted.
The MPs had instead shown bad decisions and narrow-mindedness that had triumphed over reason and logic.
"We believe as Sanef that it was a sad and tragic day in the history of our republic."
Makhanya said he was confident the proposed law could be defeated if taken to the Constitutional Court.
Mail&Guardian editor Nic Dawes said what was striking about the vote was the fight that opposition MPs put up beforehand.
He had covered Parliament for many years, but had never seen MPs use every point and rule to defeat the bill.
The bill could become a good piece of legislation if it was fixed, he said.