Celebs tweet Black Tuesday

2011-11-22 12:52

Local celebrities have tweeted their thoughts on the controversial Protection of state information bill which will come before the National Assembly for a vote on Tuesday.

South African celebrities, TV and radio personalities and artists have all taken to micro-blogging site Twitter to blast the South African government’s proposed Protection of Information Bill, or so-called Secrecy Bill.

Outspoken radio presenter Gareth Cliff showed his solidarity against the bill by changing his Twitter profile picture to a “censored” black block.

He tweeted: “I won’t be tweeting any more today. I’ve been censored. #POIB #BlackTuesday Let the Govt. tell you what’s best for you...”

South African singer and songwriter Chris Chameleon also changed his profile picture to black and fervently tweeted about the bill saying: “The poib is proof that politicians, who have long regarded themselves above the law, want to maintain the status quo.”

He followed that tweet with another shortly after saying: “What’s this nonsense anyway? politicians telling us where to get off? let’s just get this straight: you, mr politician, you work for us, ok?”

Writer and comedian Rob van Vuuren (aka Twakkie from comedy act Corne and Twakkie) also tweeted in a more sombre tone than usual – openly criticising a govenrment that would allow any kind of censorship.

He tweeted: “Govt: “you want the truth? You can’t handle the truth, so we’ll give it 2 you in pre-chewed, bite-size pieces with the tough bits taken out.”

And later: “The sad truth is that we have a govt that seems intent on turning corruption into a national sport... And a press that for the most part seems more intent on selling newspapers than being a watch dog.”

State security info
Musical duo Goldfish also showed their support by tweeting a link to a petition to stop the bill: “We’re wearing black today. Do something about the secrecy bill and sign this NOW t.co/6F3H7Efz #blacktuesday”

South African actor Fana Mokoena who is currently filming World War Z alongside Brad Pitt tweeted opinions that might suggest that he is not entirely opposed to the bill.

He tweeted: “I wonder how many people ACTUALLY know what the Protection of Information Bill is. I wonder who’s ACTUALLY read it.”

And later in reply to someone who challenged his view he tweeted back: “There is sensitive state security info. If you obtain it illegally you will be charged. I’m not sure how that compromises me.”

However, most celebrities seemed to be vehemently opposing the bill with model Lee-Ann Liebenberg urging her followers on Monday to wear black to protest the bill: “FYI; Wear black tomorrow in protest against the Protection of Information Bill aka Secrecy Bill #blacktuesday #POIB.” 

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