PROTEST PARTY & STREET CARNIVAL AT THE SABC ON WORLD PRESS FREEDOM DAY FRIDAY 03 MAY 2013
In celebration of World Press Freedom Day, and to highlight our concerns surrounding the abuse of the National Key Points Act, the Right2Know Campaign will hold a protest party & street carnival at the SABC (a national key point) on 03 May 2013.
|Date||Friday 03 May 2013|
|Venue||At the SABC on the corner ofArtillery Road & Canary Street|
RSVP on Facebook
|12:00 – 16:00|
The 3rd of May is recognised around the world as World Press Freedom Day, a day to reflect on our right to open access to information – our right to know.
On this World Press Freedom Day the Right2Know Campaign will highlight a tactic continually used by the SAPS and the Minister of Police to deny citizen’s of their right to know, an infringement on their basic human rights: the abuse of the National Key Points Act. Currently the National Key Points Act is being used to make a mockery of the right of access to information, and perpetuates the shroud of secrecy over information that is vital to the public interest.
The National Key Points Act is a draconian and obscure piece of apartheid-era legislation which remains on our statute books, and gives the head of the SAPS the power to declare any place a ‘national key point’ if it is deemed important to national security. Any site can be named a key point, from our airports and factories to our power stations and presidential residences – yet the public doesn’t even know which buildings now fall under the Act.
On 4 October 2012, according to the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA), the Right2Know Campaign launched a request for the Minister of Police to release the full list of National Key Points. The police refused this request and we appealed. After the police missed the legal deadline to respond to our appeal, we granted them a 30-day extension, which the Minister missed also. Eventually, on 7 March 2013 the Minister, Dr Siyabonga Cwele, upheld the decision to refuse to release the list of National Key Points.
We find the Minister’s reasons for refusing to release the list unacceptable and illogical.
Some examples of how the National Key Points Act is used to prevent your right to know:
- In the midst of the Nkandla-gate scandal, the President’s Nkandla property was conveniently declared a national key point, preventing those investigating the story from accessing relevant information which would be in the public interest
- Private-sector players in the petrochemical industry have attempted to use the Act to prevent communities in South Durban from gathering information on their environmental impact
- Citizen’s have been denied their right to assemble at certain places on the grounds that they wish to gather at a ‘national key point’, infringing on their constitutionally enshrined right to assembly
- Finally, there is no publically published list of National Key Points. So, although citizen’s rights are limited at places which are national key points, there is no way of knowing where these places are. This means that you could be breaking the law without even knowing it, by staging a protest at a national key point or even photographing it.
In a report released earlier this year (Secret State of the Nation report) the Right2Know Campaign revealed how there has been a 54% increase in the number of national key points across the country in the last 5 years – but we still don’t have a list of them. The state is actively promoting this unjust law, using it in blatant disregard for the citizen’s right to know, the public interest, and open access to information.
The SABC is a national key point
As such, we will do what the National Key Points Act would prohibit us from doing, and gather at the SABC on World Press Freedom Day. We will be holding a street carnival protest party in celebration of World Press Freedom Day, to highlight our demands for a greater culture of openness in South Africa, and to call for a rolling back of the shroud of secrecy!
Read the Right2Know Campaign’s Secret State of the Nation report here, and find out how the National Key Points Act is continually being abused to enhance a culture of secrecy!
All are welcome to take part in the above mentioned event!
Come wearing RED & BLACK.
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