Home Contact Us Maps Links The Constitution Marikana
| More
SAHRC Statement on latest developments regarding the Protection of State Information Bill

Date: Friday, 11 May 2012

The South African Rights Commission welcomes the steps taken by State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele to ensure that the Protection of Information Bill passes constitutional muster. The Protection of Information Bill in its current form is unconstitutional and unjustifiably limits people’s basic right to access information. The receptiveness of the Minister to the concerns expressed by the Commission, civil society and the public is commended.

The Commission has provided comprehensive objections to the Bill. In its most recent submissions to the NCOP, the Commission stressed that the Bill must be considered in light of the Constitutional provisions of access to information. The Commission stated that the right to information is pivotal in the realisation of other rights and combating poverty. Facilitating access to information held by public officials’ also impacts on service delivery.  It enables people to participate in the governance processes that affect their lives as well as hold government to account.

While some compromises proposed by the Ad hoc Committee are noted, the Commission calls for a review of Section 1(4) of the Protection of Information Bill. This section erodes  the Constitutional provisions of access to information and the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA). It contradicts the Constitution and the limitations clause, as well as Section 5 of PAIA.

The preamble of the PAIA states, "the system of Government in South Africa before 1994 resulted in a secretive and unresponsive culture in public and private bodies which often led to an abuse of power and human right violations” Access to information is seen as a key means to prevent  a secretive and unresponsive public service.

Hence the Commission is of the view that Section 1(4) be amended and harmonized with PAIA to ensure that the principles of a transparent and open democracy are not compromised.

For more information: Vincent Moaga 0735629866/ vinmoaga@mtn.blackberry.com
For comments email info@sahrc.org.za [Back]

- See more at: http://www.justice.gov.za/legislation/constitution/index.html#sthash.vQme5ODl.dpuf

The South African Constitution

The Commission is available on social media

SAHRC TWITTER.jpg One.jpg @SAHRCommission

Facebook-Icon.jpg SA Human Rights Commission

YOU1.png SAHRC 1

To lodge a human rights violation complaint, click here.

or Call 011 877 3600
e-mail: complaints@sahrc.org.za

Provincial contact details are available here


PAIA section 14 Manual.jpg


SAHRC launches investigation into allegations of racism at University of the Free State
SAHRC finalizing report on complaints against King Goodwill Zwelithini
SAHRC response to ANC petition on racism
International Disability Day – SAHRC calls for employers to do more
SAHRC welcomes Supreme Court judgment on the delivery of textbooks in Limpopo


Pfanelo January Edition

Upcoming Events

  • 20 year Anniversary Celebration


Report any fraudulent and/or unethical behavior taking place in the Commission anonymously to the SAHRC Tip-offs Line.

FreeCall: 0800 222 365
Email: sahrc@tip-offs.com
FreeFax: 0800 00 77 88
FreePost: KZN 138, Umhlanga Rocks 4320
Website: www.tip-offs.com

Independently managed by the Office of the Public Service Commission.


SAHRC Programmes

Since its establishment, the SAHRC has dedicated itself to:
•  Raising awareness;
•  Monitoring and assessment;
•  Education and training
•  Addressing human rights violations

How can the SAHRC help?

The SAHRC promotes, protects and monitors human rights in South Africa. It also has a specific responsibility to promote and monitor the implemen-
tation of PAIA.


08 March – International Women’s Day
21 March - Human Rights Day
27 April – Freedom day
1 May - Workers day
03 May – World Press Freedom Day

[See more]