News24

Info bill: ANC says not bowing to pressure

2012-05-11 22:10

Cape Town - The ANC was not bowing to pressure with the proposed amendments to the protection of state information bill, Raseriti Tau, the chairperson of the ad hoc committee in the National Council of Provinces (NCOP), said on Friday.

Tau insisted that the proposals were not dictated by Luthuli House and political considerations but rather by concerns raised by members of the public.

"That this bill seeks to protect corruption - that came out of all the public hearings," he said.

"There was no mandate that I know of. Luthuli House is on record as saying 'we respect the parliamentary process'."

Tau held open the door for further changes before the committee is expected to report to the NCOP by the end of June.

"We can be persuaded further and we can also still further persuade people on other things."

Call for further amendments


Rights groups urged the ANC on Friday to bring further amendments to the information bill.

They said concessions made this week were significant but fell short of meeting their demands.

The Right2Know (R2K) campaign pointed out that a proposal by the ANC to protect whistleblowers who reveal classified information to expose corruption, did not extend to other offences created by the act.

These include being in possession of such information, which can be punished by up to five years in prison.

"This protection is an improvement, but is not meaningful until it is extended to all offences contained in the bill," said the group, which was born in opposition to the bill.

It added that the ANC had not budged on calls to decriminalise the possession and publication of state secrets once they were put in the public domain.

Veil of secrecy


Nor, it said, did a change proposed by the ruling party on section 49 of the act go far enough to remove one of critics' main objections to the bill - that it would limit the accountability of the intelligence community.

The ANC agreed to narrow this provision to criminalise only the exposure of classified information relating to security matters - whereas before this applied to any information - but retained a maximum sentence of 10 years for such an act.

The party did not apply the new exemption given to whistleblowers on exposing wrongdoing to this clause, the R2K's national organiser Murray Hunter said.

"Thus, the complete veil of secrecy over the work of spooks remains intact."

Hunter urged the ruling party to write "a full public interest defence" into the bill, "so that it cannot be used to threaten or imprison people who seek or expose the truth".

Unconstitutional

Alison Tilley from the Open Democracy Advice Centre noted that the ANC had so far not heeded a call by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela to safeguard the right of Chapter 9 institutions in the bill.

"Chapter 9 institutions are not being given the right to receive classified information."

Madonsela raised the point in parliamentary hearings in March, warning that if the bill became law without such safeguards she could be arrested for routinely receiving secret files.

Tilley also said the ANC had not addressed the dissonance in the bill on the Promotion of Access to Information Act, which it attempts to trump in section 1 (4).

Legal experts have repeatedly warned that this provision is unconstitutional because it would claw back a right granted by prior, constitutionally mandated legislation.

The ANC's amendments partly read like a response to threats from labour federation Cosatu to challenge the bill in court unless protection was given to whistleblowers and the powers of the intelligence operatives were checked.

Comments
  • Leon - 2012-05-11 22:15

    let us take the usseless servants to court

      Godfrey - 2012-05-11 22:31

      Makes you wonder how many ANC MP's knew what they voted for in Parly.

      Arthur - 2012-05-11 23:56

      Dear ANC I would like to remind you that you were hired by the people, and that "pressure" you feel are the voices of the people who demand you scrap your corrupt, obvious attempt to hide your intention to further rape and pillage this beautiful country and it's beautiful people in future. Sincerely, the little folk.

      Tony - 2012-05-12 07:44

      Andt here is that ANC arrogance .... The same one that got them into the toll problem, the Selebi problem, the Malema problem ... And so on.

      Patrick - 2012-05-12 12:35

      Dear ANC, you might not be bowing to the pressure yet, but just remember that that's the same stance the previous regime had and just look what happened to them. It's ok, i can wait for your demise.

  • Gerald Jordaan - 2012-05-11 22:32

    The dumb ass ANC trying to save face!! George Bizos et Vavi et de Clerk et Mandela et Joe public gave them a klap they won't easily forget!!

  • Sharon - 2012-05-11 22:57

    Of course they are not bowing to pressure!! (Nudge nudge, wink wink)

  • Slick - 2012-05-11 23:32

    Hmm what a LAUGH!.. I Have already been SLAPPED with the Secrecy Clauses as contained in ALL the Food and Beverage Regulating Authorities legislation's in South Africa for Months! FOR EXPOSING AND CONTINUE TO EXPOSE NOTHING BUT HEINOUS FRAUD, HEALTH ABUSES, CORRUPTION AND COLLUSION BETWEEN THE FOOD AND BEVERAGE INDUSTRY AND THE GOVERNMENT IN SOUTH AFRICA, THIS AGAINST AND WHICH HAS /IS AFFECTS/ED..AFFECTS/ED ALL CITIZENS ON A DAILY BASIS WHETHER ALIVE OR THOSE THAT ARE UNFORTUNATELY DECEASED!! This has been occurring and continues unabated in South Africa for more years than any of the citizens in South Africa could possibly even dream up or guess at! Note NOT by just the current Government / Regime. But a HUGE surprise awaits them ALL.I SHALL NOT BE SILENCED,THE PUBLIC WILL KNOW REAL SOON.TO SAY I WILL NEVER BE SILENCED WOULD BY SILLY BUT AT LEAST I WOULD HAVE BEEN "TAKEN OUT",KNOWING I ATTEMPTED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN CITIZENS LIVES IN MANY WAYS. THESE SAME DEPARTMENTS HAVE ACKNOWLEDGED AND VALIDATED ALL THE COMPLAINTS I HAVE PLACED ON THEM AS CORRECT. THE INDUSTRY HAS ADMITTED GUILT IN MOST IF NOT ALL INSTANCES! HOW DO THEY DARE DO THIS TO US ALL? SO TO THE GOVERNMENT OF THE DAY AND ALL YOU COLLUDE WITH.TAKE YOUR INFORMATION BILL AND SECRECY BILLS AND LAWS AND SHOVE IT WHERE THE SUN DON'T SHINE. YOU ARE ALL NOTHING MORE THAN CORRUPT,HEINOUS, FRAUDULENT, IMMORAL AND UNETHICAL EVIL BIGOTS!! THAT WILL BE EXPOSED AND THE TIME HAS TICKED UP FOR THEM ALL.

      Arthur - 2012-05-11 23:57

      Yeah and I'll bet Monsanto has a large stake in that corruption. You the man - stick it to 'em Slick!

      Tony - 2012-05-12 07:46

      Tell us more ..... Get it in the press before the racist ANC regime regulate that too!!

      John - 2012-07-27 19:29

      Keep looking at the godless multinational CORPORATIONS who are the MASTERS of our SERVANT the government who have lost sight of the fact that they are to serve. They are not an elite autocratic autonomous body. We the SHEEPLE need to wake up to the fact that we are the PEOPLE.

  • Lacrimose - 2012-05-12 00:27

    The two ANC mantras : "Crisis? What Crisis?" and now "Pressure? What Pressure?" Keep going as you are and soon it will be "Voters? What Voters?"

  • Piesangstaat - 2012-05-12 05:56

    Yes you are! Not everyone votes for the ANC. Some of us can actually think for ourselves.

  • Bertus - 2012-05-12 06:50

    Bowing to pressure? Sorry, but you, ANC, fought for democracy and service the people that votes for you. Not bowing to pressure means you are defying the will of the people!

      Bob - 2012-05-12 08:43

      Spot on!

  • Michelle - 2012-05-12 07:17

    Faq the anc. I bet they don't even know that being put in a government position means you're supposed to SERVE the people! And serve with honesty and integrity. They are EXACTLY like the apartheid government because they are trying to hide the truth so they can get away with everything and anything! Sies man. We need to stand together, all races, against any government that acts this way.

  • vernon.samuel.7 - 2012-05-12 07:35

    Pull the other one! They either wait for the court ruling and end up with scrambled egg on their face. Or they relent now and end up with poached egg on their face. Easier to clean off.

  • Glyn - 2012-05-12 07:40

    Like the anc didn't bow to pressure over e-tolloing! Ha! Ha! Time to vote DA! Get rid of these political thugs.

  • Donald - 2012-05-12 08:06

    what public?\r\nsomeone has to be responsible,is it luthuli house or the union buildings

  • Rob - 2012-05-12 08:40

    Arrogant double-speak to create the impression that the anc is omniscient and that when changes are made those changes are the result of highly intelligent and informed debate within the anc party. The reality that we see everyday gives the lie to that attitude, but not everyone seeks the truth, rather only the emotion.

  • Bob - 2012-05-12 08:43

    Wait until the people start to react in mass, then we will see if they bow to pressure. This government is heading for a huge wake up call with their blatant arrogance and ongoing self-centered egotistical attitude!

  • Travis - 2012-05-12 09:47

    Time to vote out these criminals that call themselves a government. This act should speak volumes to ANC supporters. Why dont they just call it the 'Pull the wool over your eyes act'.

  • Antwahn - 2012-05-12 11:05

    The recent proposed amendments seem to make the Protection of ANC Corruption Bill not any less loonier! Read it again: "The Right2Know (R2K) campaign pointed out that a proposal by the ANC to protect whistleblowers who reveal classified information to expose corruption, did not extend to other offences created by the act. These include being in possession of such information, which can be punished by up to five years in prison" -end quote. What this means is that if "protected" info about state corruption lands up on your hard-drive and you DON'T become a whistle blower, you can face up to five years in jail anyway! And if you have some financial resources and a good lawyer, in your defence, you may be able to prove the alleged corruption and be free -after a nerve-wrecking time and only to face financial ruin due to massive legal bills. (And in good ANC-tradition our crooked cadre will be re-deployed in another post, to continue contributing to the mega-billion rand graft that SA is burdened under.) STOP THIS CRAZY BILL OUTRIGHT! Stop trying to fix something that's inherently wrong, but is being sold to the imbecilic masses (that's how they must look at us) as being to the benefit of SA.

  • Ryan - 2012-05-12 12:10

    Of course the ANC will not bow. They want to protect their corrupt and rotten core!

  • Jacqui - 2012-05-12 12:18

    These people tell so many lies, they won't know the truth if it bites them in the arse.

  • thozi - 2012-05-12 16:15

    If I was an ANC hothead(leader), I would readily and proudly admit that the ANC has indeed listened to the people, hence its reconsideration of the controversial clause. But ANC being what it is, No NO NO, the last thing it will ever admit to, is that ït "listens to the people". So? The people can simply go to hell...

  • Slick - 2012-05-13 07:35

    WHAT THE HELL!! Hahah... well damn some of my follow up posts to the one above, must have gotten up someone's behind or made them very angry..EVEN NEWS 24 TRYING TO SILENCE ME NOW ...BY REMOVING MY POSTS!! The TRUTH HURTS, DOES IT !! and IT WILL PREVAIL !! mmm Let me put them back and be interesting to see what happens....

  • Slick - 2012-05-13 07:36

    What is even more heinous and frightening in reference to my prior post is that numerous PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA FORUM type companies and groups have and known and know about my on going investigations and research for years,not just months and they too are seemingly PETRIFIED to inform the PUBLIC and CITIZENS AS IT WILL OBVIOUSLY IMPACT FINANCIALLY ON THEIR BUSINESSES IN VARIOUS WAYS. Is the printing and portrayal via other mannerisms of media the Incorrectly Labelled Food and Beverage product/s not also criminal and aiding and abetting with criminals? What does this tell you all.... Always indicating the Government and the Food and beverage Industry WILL NOT RESPOND TO THEM WHEN CONFRONTED WITH THE TRUTH... MAKES YOU THINK DOES'NT IT... need I say more other than the The TRUTH will be begin to be exposed in the 1st Criminal Court Case against the F&B Industry which is set down for the 1st week in June 2012. This after fighting the Government and ALL its F&B Regulating Agencies including the SAPS CCU to have the initial and NOVEL, yes NOVEL matter/case brought before a court of Law for more than 2 Years. Will they attempt to delay the matter again, only time will tell Do NOT lose sight of the mere FACT. This is South Africa where anything to prevent Justice applies!! All at the unsuspecting customer and consumers ultimate sacrifice in so so many ways and for so so many years

  • Slick - 2012-05-13 07:39

    @ Hugh and EK. Its all about products that have been incorrectly labeled,declared, advertised, marketed and sold unsuspecting customers and consumers. What you have seen, considered and believed to be the TRUTH on Labels and adverts IS NOT THE TRUTH whatsoever/howsoever on numerous and various products. As much as past and present Legislation,Regulation,Standards and Specifications FORBID and or PROHIBIT this.Yet the Government allow it to continue unabated for so many years.All my complaints made have led to a response I am the first person to have brought it to their various attentions. When intervention is demanded. I am told their is NO budget, Human or otherwise to monitor, control and enforce the Legislation's.The Industry are simply left to self regulate. So why have Legislation in the first instance? No wonder South Africa is a sick and dying dysfunctional society to say the least. Also Consider the FACT at how severely the HEALTH profession is and had been compromised. How can the Medical Profession cure ill and ailing patients when they are not being told the absolute TRUTH as to what citizens have been and are consuming? It goes without saying that the majority of illness can be traced to food and beverages consumed. Why are WE all being DENIED our legal and constitutional rights to make OUR OWN informed and educated decisions as to what we will or will not consume. BASED ON TRUTH AND TRUST IMPLICITLY EITHER IN THE GOVERNMENT AND OR THE F&B INDUSTRIES?

  • Danny - 2012-05-22 07:18

    Was it not the very same members of the public that voted for the present government which is the ANC.SO at the time of voting everyones vote was important.Now all of a sudden,the members of the public is voting against the information bill- which turns out to be irrelevant.Does'nt the opinions of the members of the count anymore?

  • Danny - 2012-05-22 07:27

    Someone does'nt like what they see.Now that it is hanging out in the open so that everyone does not need to pay for gallery seat or ringside view to look at it.The best one that I EVER SAW.

  • Danny - 2012-05-22 07:32

    In Parliament,only one voice is heard,that of the corrupt MPs which is none other than the ANC who is running our beautiful country into ruins. I only pray and hope that someone should take over from the present choas even by a MIRACLE.

  • Danny - 2012-05-25 16:34

    The ANC will definitely bow to pressure if the whole of the rainbow nation protest or object to the passing of the info bill which is absolutely undemocratic and a total wastage of taxpayers money.

  • John - 2012-07-27 18:39

    cANCer needs some method of hiding its cadres criminal misdeeds so they need suppression of information. We the PEOPLE have every right to ANY and ALL information held by OUR SERVANT the government or state. They have lost sight of the fact that THEY are the representatives and agents of the PEOPLE not some AUTONOMOUS body that deems itself our MASTER.

  • pages:
  • 1