Parliament Incorporates President’s Media Bills Observations

A previous parliament session. [File]

President Salva Kiir last month sent the three media bills; Media Authority, Right to Access of Information and Broadcasting Corporation back to the parliament after his observations of some key areas he felt needed reviews.

Among the observations includes; section 53(2) of the Right to Access of Information which requires laying of regulations made by the Commissioner of Information to be approved by parliament before publishing. Kiir said the clause is inappropriate and as such the August House deleted it.

He also raised a concern on the clause referring officials to release information as bonafides and on good faith. Kiir challenges the clause and demanded for its deletion, explaining the phrase “good faith” is subjective, saying it is a sweeping statement.

He said the section may be abused by dishonest individuals who may release unclassified information. However, the August House said the clause is in line with the Penal Code of Act and as such was maintained.

After the Presentation of the President’s observations by the Chairperson of the Information Committee in the parliament, Hon. Joy Kwaje, the Speaker Manasseh Magok subjected some of the clauses for voting and passed them.

The bills now await the signature of the President to become laws. 

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