Mass protests are planned on Tuesday (Black Tuesday) as the controversial Protection of Information Bill (POIB) aka Secrecy Bill is put to a vote in Parliament's National Assembly in Cape Town. If and when the Secrecy bill becomes law, state information may be classified "in the interest of national security" and anyone publishing such information, including journalists and whistle-blowers, could face a 25-year jail sentence. It will, be illegal to make secret state information public, even if it exposes serious corruption or crime. Due to the exclusion of a public interest defence, various civil rights organisations, interest groups, opposition parties and including Cosatu the government's partner have threatened to fight the proposed act in the Constitutional Court.
Secrecy bill • Black Tuesday • Democracy • Freedom of Speech
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