Secrecy Bill: ANC attacked

2012-02-20 00:00

THE Inkatha Freedom Party has called on the National Council of Provinces to review the way it conducts public hearings on the Protection of State Information Bill.

Prince Muntukaphiwana Zulu, the IFP’s representative in the NCOP, said it had become apparent that the public hearings were being used to mobilise ANC supporters and silence the opposition.

The ANC whip in the NCOP, Nosipho Ntwanambi, had used her position as chair to silence, ridicule and insult opposing voices, he said, while in Vryheid on Thursday the event was turned into an ANC rally by the mayor, Patience Khaba.

“ … the NCOP needs to immediately review the entire process in ensuring that all South Africans voice their concerns,” Zulu said.

Hearings on the bill in KZN were also heard in Umlazi and Harding.

Spokesperson Khuthala Noah said the NCOP’s mandate was to visit all provinces to allow all South Africans to have their say on the information bill.

“This is the first time that this has come to my attention, but we do have an ad hoc committee member who has a duty to ensure that all people’s views are heard on this matter because we are not politically affiliated; we serve the interests of all provinces.”

Noah said that during the hearings people spoke more about service delivery challenges than about the information bill.

• thobani.ngqulunga

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