ANC's new secrecy bill strategy gets a hammering
The ANC is countering the groundswell of opposition to its proposed secrecy law by setting up its own private committee to gather input on the bill.
The DA said the ANC had abused parliamentary procedures because the Protection of Information Bill was due be voted on by parliament. It said only a parliamentary committee had the right to hear new submissions on the bill.
The ad hoc parliamentary committee on the bill was dissolved when the ANC removed the vote from the parliamentary order paper last week after discovering that not all its national executive committee members supported the bill. It did not, however, withdraw the bill itself; it merely postponed the vote.
ANC chief whip Mathole Motshekga has established an "information bill unit" in his office. ANC parliamentary caucus spokesman Moloto Mothapo yesterday said the unit would hold public meetings with "ordinary people in the remotest village".
The ANC wanted to ensure that it did not "only listen to the views of well-financed lobby groups .".
Right2Know Campaign's Dale McKinley slammed the move.
". These hearings are led by the ANC and not parliament. If the ANC is only going to talk to its own people, who it picks and chooses, then it is turning its back on public participation."