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AIPPA to stay - Minister
MISA-Zimbabwe
October 14, 2011

The Minister of Justice and Legal Affairs Patrick Chinamasa on 12 October 2011 said the draconian Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (AIPPA) and the Public Order and Security Act will not be amended. In his concluding remarks in Geneva, Switzerland, on the occasion of the adoption of Zimbabwe¹s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) report by the working group of the Human Rights Council (HRC), Chinamasa defended the two laws saying they were here to stay.

"Madam President, there was too much reference to POSA and AIPPA, especially from the Western Group. These two pieces of legislation are not inventions by Zimbabwe and they are there to stay. These pieces do not violate any fundamental freedoms as long as their letter and spirit is followed", he said.

MISA-Zimbabwe position

MISA-Zimbabwe notes that the Minister¹s assertions contradict the Secretary for Media, Information and Publicity George Charamba who in July this year said AIPPA would only be amended after the completion of the ongoing constitution-making process.

Charamba told the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Media, Information and Communication Technology the government had put AIPPA amendments on the back burner ostensibly because government must first complete the drafting of a new Constitution.

MISA-Zimbabwe reiterates its unequivocal demands for the inclusion of constitutional provisions that explicitly guarantee media freedom and the citizens¹ right to access to information in the envisaged new constitution. The two constitutional provisions in question will effectively deal severe blows to laws such as AIPPA which impinge on media freedom and citizens¹ rights to freedom of expression and access to information.

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