Info bill will compromise research - UJ

2011-09-20 11:38

Johannesburg - The senate of the University of Johannesburg has urged the legislature not to adopt the protection of state information bill in its present form.

UJ deputy vice chancellor Prof Adam Habib said on Tuesday the bill did not address the concerns of citizens and had a negative impact on academic research.

"The bill in its present form will not only enable the cover up of corruption and incompetence, but it will also compromise the research of many academics and the work of many journalists which is essential for ensuring the public scrutiny of decisions made in government and in state institutions," he said.

"Even more importantly the present bill proposes limits to freedom and will ultimately diminish the democratic character of our society."

Constitutional democracy

The senate called on the legislature and the ANC to return the bill to the drafting committee, and asked it to engage civil society institutions, including universities, with a view to redrafting it so that it is compatible and in tune with South Africa's constitutional democracy.

The ANC announced on Monday that it would not go ahead with the planned tabling of the bill on Tuesday.

This was to enable further consultation on the bill, but it would be passed by December.

The bill's intention is to protect certain state information from destruction or disclosure.

Civil society and media representatives have expressed concern over what they believe are the over-reaching powers of the bill to criminalise possession of certain information by a journalist or member of the public that would expose corruption or wrong doing by a government official.

  • Servaas - 2011-09-20 11:48

    "The bill's intention is to protect certain state information from destruction or disclosure." destruction or disclosure? In short all your destructive crimes will be covered up and never disclosed.. Wish this was like Russia where they just shot damn corrupt goverment officials and you read about it in the morning paper. Story like that will go down brilliantly with coffee, 1st thing in the morning.

      Martin du Plessis - 2011-09-20 14:04

      I believe you're thinking about China.

      umlaut - 2011-09-20 14:53

      Servaas --their might just be another reason for this withdrawal--if they voted for it and it became law then other parties will immediately lodge an appeal to the con court and then they can't apply their secret tricks in any case because it will be 'frozen' until a verdict is passed This has something to do with timing relating to some other matter. We can guess and say it is the arms deal and they need unhindered action to hide some evil and they will work on a few wordings and then next month it is the same thing and they want to slip it through without the threat of going to the con court. The truth will only come out later of TRICKS they will use, to by-pass the con court. You can't trust the anc, especially if they are also in support of killing the boer hate song. We have probably reached the top level on the genocide scale now with the ruling party officially supporting the eradication of another minority race. If they can't see that that is wrong, then there is no hope for their deceitful intensions relating to this secrets bill. They are already squandering tax payers money without blushing, so they will make trillions disappear with secret laws on their side and they will buy votes for elections as to get 75% majority and then the constitution will be changed for a one party dictatorship. everything journalist would like to publish will have to be approved by the dictators first. They can pass laws then like making popcorn and they can tax whites into the sea.

  • Buic Unix - 2011-09-20 11:49

    Christmas is the time when kids tell Santa what they want and adults pay for it. Deficits are when adults tell government what they want and their kids pay for it. ~Richard Lamm

  • claudevn - 2011-09-20 11:50

    All RESPECT to the guyz @ Right 2 Know! (Just BTW).. UJ is a world class institution, they carry the future of our youth! Listen to the people whom know their stuff!!!

      piney - 2011-09-20 12:24

      Where have you been the last couple of months? UJ destroyed their academic credibility with their recent anti-Semitist boycott of Israel. They're no strangers to pandering to ideology when it suits them.

      ThinkAboutIt - 2011-09-20 13:37

      @Piney - if that was anti-semitism (why is that even a word? Aren't all people equal?)... then anyone who boycotted the NP during apartheid were anti-white. Supporting oppressed people by boycotting the oppressors doesn't make you anti-anyone, it makes you pro-equality, pro-democracy, pro-life, pro-freedom.

      InternetMan - 2011-09-20 13:52

      Aaaww shame piney you little butthurt jew.

      Cire - 2011-09-20 13:58

      @piney. Dead right! We demand the right to be heard but bugger us hearing anything from Israelis. Stinks of hypocrisy. Either we have freedom of speech or we don't. UJ seems to think THEY should have freedom of speech - as well as the right to decide who else has it!

      Cire - 2011-09-20 14:00

      @thinkaboutit. Read internetman's comment for an example of anti-semitism.

      ThinkAboutIt - 2011-09-20 14:59

      @Cire - internetman's comment is an insult. Why aren't there words for insulting a hindu person? Why is there not a specific word for insulting a person from Argentinia? My point is that the fact that the phrase "anti-semitism" exists when the other exampels I gave do not, implies that Jewish people are somehow more important in this world, and that an insult to a Jewish person, that has it's own word, is somehow worse than an insult to anyone else. This is wrong. Everyone is equal. Everyone deserves to be treated equally.

  • Dave50 - 2011-09-20 12:00

    Another talking report, but no suggestions on actions, or how to stop the bill, the people that vote and pass the bill in government, will be the ones who need to use it for a cover up.

  • ratladykzn - 2011-09-20 12:29

    One of the steps towards a communist lead country. This has always been ANC and ANCYL's intentions. may God help us all and this beautiful contry that is heading towards rack and ruin.

  • lakhan7 - 2011-09-20 12:34

    Are we moving towards communism? How would the info bill support democracy? The very thing the MK and the freedom fighters fought for?

  • Currie_Mafia - 2011-09-20 12:42

    43,785 have sent messages! Let's reach 50,000 The Protection of Information Bill has been withdrawn from the parliamentary programme for tomorrow's vote. ANC Chief Whip Mathole Motshekga said the legislation had been withdrawn for "further consideration". Public pressure is working! Now let's make sure the Bill is redrafted to respect our Constitutional rights

  • ArtimusPrime - 2011-09-20 12:57

    As far as i am concerned, we are not living in a democracy.

  • Pixie1984 - 2011-09-20 13:00

    Convenient for nationalisation and the arms deal don't you think...

  • Adriaan Coetzer - 2011-09-21 00:11


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