May 07, 2016 - Comments Off on The peculiar timing of NA’s decision to release Cyber Crime Law’s final draft
Despite having passed the Cyber Crime Bill on April 13, 2016, the National Assembly made little to no efforts to disseminate the document anywhere. The Bill did not make an appearance on the official website and had till now eluded the general public.
May 7th, 2016 was chosen as the lucky day when the document was finally released - and the decision to pick this date is no accident. By stalling for this long the NA has ensured that no actual criticism or debate could take place within public domains. Why the NA felt the need to hide the bill from public scrutiny is a question that really needs to be asked right now. Had it been released before there would have been a healthy debate for a long enough time before the next Senate session which begins on May 9th and ends on May 20th.
Had an actual debate taken place it would have really helped the cause of the public and civil society organizations. The Bill still has the potential of being stopped when it goes to the Senate floor. Why the government is hell bent on approving a version of the bill that will be problematic for years to come is another question that we must ask. It has become painfully obvious that the government has no interest in investing any of its time in ensuring transparency when it comes to the process of law making - or any other process for that matter.
A law is no joke, undoing, repealing or amending parts of any law is a herculean task. Such efforts have historically not gone over well. If this Bill is allowed to go through then we can welcome in a new era of censorship and tyranny.
To take a better look at what the law entails and how it's about to hit the public hard, go to the following link: National Assembly's approved Cyber Crime Bill
Published by: Digital Rights Foundation in Blog