South Africa Sets New Deadline for Secrecy Bill

24 June 2011

The South African National Assembly has extended until Sept. 23 the deadline for approval of the controversial Protection of Information.

The action, as reported in News24, came after an ad hoc committee working on the bill missed its June 24 deadline. (See previous report.)

The Right2Know campaign welcomed the action, commenting, “It is clear that mounting public pressure has forced those behind the Bill to revise their position.”

“What remains to be seen,” the group continued, “is whether this extension will be coupled with a renewed spirit of openness, precision and proper deliberation on the demands made by civil society and communities across the country.’

“There is an enormous amount of work to be done to bring the Bill in line with the principles of transparent and open democracy. It remains to be seen if our MPs have discovered the political will to do that work,” according to the Right2Know statement.

Right2Know campaign said it has the support of over 400 organizations behind its demands and that  nearly 20,000 people have joined the campaign as individuals.

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