MPs processing the protection of state information bill on Tuesday heeded advice from State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele to seek more legal counsel on the adoption of a committee report. The bill was sent back to the ad hoc committee last week, after it failed to observe procedural rules. The committee's report was meant to include minority views on amendments to sections 42 and 45 of the bill.
At Tuesday's meeting, it was agreed that the DA and African Christian Democratic Party's (ACDP) views would be recorded in the report. However, Cope and IFP MPs were not present in the meeting, raising questions about whether their opinion on the amended bill should be included. Committee chair Cecil Burgess said advice would be sought from state law advisers and parliamentary staff. In the meantime, a draft report would be circulated among MPs. "
There will be another paragraph which will incorporate that both IFP and Cope objects to the process, but abstained from the adoption of the report. That will be circulate very soon," Burgess said. The meeting was postponed to Wednesday to give MPs time to consider the draft report.