KASOLO REJECTS OPPOSITION DEMANDS ON INFO BILL

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By SILUMESI MALUMO

IT will not be in order to publish the contents of proposed Access to Information Bill (ATI) before it goes to Parliament, Information and Broadcasting Permanent Secretary Chanda Kasolo said.

Mr Kasolo said the bill was supposed to pass the necessary procedure before being the contents are made known to the public.

He told the Daily Nation yesterday that the Draft Bill would go to Cabinet for approval before it was taken to Parliament.

Mr Kasolo was reacting to UPND spokesperson Charles Kakoma who called on the government to publish the contents of the bill before it was taken to Parliament.

But Mr Kasolo said the stakeholders would only be invited to make submissions to the bill once it reached the parliamentary committee.

He said it was not in order for the government to defy the necessary procedures by publishing the contents before it reached the committee.

He said Government would not be held hostage by breaking the parliamentary rules, publishing the contents.

“The way the process is, is that the bill goes through the necessary stages. First stage the Draft bill goes to Cabinet, when the Cabinet approvals then it will be taken to the parliamentary committee and at this stage then the committee will be able to invite the stakeholders to make contributions
to the bill,” he said.

And Mr Kasolo appealed to stakeholders to be patient as the government would make known the contest through the parliamentary committee.

“As government there is nothing to hide about the bill. Everything will be known by the public,” he said.

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