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MISA makes written submissions on Media gazetted bill

by Stephen Jakes
17 Jan 2020 at 11:04hrs | Views
MISA Zimbabwe has made both oral and written submissions to the Committee outlining issues of concern and the gaps in the gazetted Bill in the context of the Constitution, the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, Model Law on Access to Information, and other international benchmarks and best practices.

NANGO report states that the oral and written submissions and recommendations on democratising and strengthening the Bill were made at the commencement of the public hearings in Harare on 19 August 2019.

"The submissions also acknowledged and highlighted some of the positive provisions in the Freedom of Information Bill when viewed against regional and international benchmarks and best practices," NANGO reported.

"Members of the public unequivocally supported the move to repeal AIPPA. While there were varying submissions regarding the title of the Bill, there was general consensus on the need to align the Bill with the country's 2013 Constitution. "

THe NGO stated that there were concerns on the lack of public awareness on the parliamentary hearings and contents of the gazetted Freedom of Information Bill.

"This resulted in low attendances and participation by the general citizenry during the hearings resulting in some of the citizens making submissions or raising issues that were not related to the Bill," NANGO reported.

"The low turnout, which characterised all the public hearings, could be attributed to poor communication and publicity on the hearings on the part of Parliament. Members of the public submitted that turnout could have been higher if communication and information about the hearings and the Bill had been made well in advance."

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Source - Byo24News