31 March 2012

More delays on the Secrecy Bill

The National Council of Provinces has delayed pronouncement on the adoption of the Protection of State Information Bill to 17 May.

The decision by NCOP Ad Hoc committee to delay the undertaking on the Secrecy bill comes after a record 263 appeals to the bill were submitted. The committee has decided to award itself with more time to "better acquaint" itself with the submissions received.

The vast amount of submissions received by the committee is indicative of the overwhelming opposition levelled against the bill in its current form. However, only 17 submissions have been considered and subsequently invited to present their cases to the committee in Cape Town.

Furthermore, the Ad Hoc Committee has chosen organisations and individuals that are mostly removed from the grass-root level. This has raised speculation on the selection process applied by the committee in selecting submissions.