The Right2Know Campaign is saddened by the sudden death of Andre Brink, one of South Africa’s great literary figures. We will always remember Brink’s contribution to the fight against the draconian Secrecy Bill.
At a historic R2K march to Parliament Brink delivered a petition against the secrecy bill signed by a wide range of writers including Zakes Mda and Nadine Gordimer.
Brink wrote at the time “Mr. Zuma has ushered in a new kind of silence that is threatening to take the place of ordinary communication. His proposed legislation betrays a dangerous attitude toward the word, written or spoken. It has been said that the prime function of the word is to interrogate silence; but if silence becomes sequestered beyond the reach of words, of language, of the press, of literature, that space becomes inhabited by lies and distortions, pretenses and subterfuges and inadequacies of all kinds.”
The Secrecy Bill has now been sitting on President Zuma’s desk for over a year awaiting his signature. The Secrecy Bill therefore still represents a real threat to our freedom. The R2K Campaign remains committed to challenging the President to scrap it.
We call on everyone living in South Africa to honour Andre Brink by demanding that the President must scrap the Secrecy Bill. Zuma must close this chapter and call on parliament to prepare a democratic classification law that advances our constitutional right to a transparent and accountable government.