I've started reviewing the press releases of the various government department clusters' programme of action for the coming year.
Buried in the Programme of Action for Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster it seems there are two bills coming up that might be worth some scrutiny.
The first of these is the National Strategic Intelligence Amendment Bill which might have some privacy issues. From the news release:
The next is the Protection of Information Bill.The Bill establishes the National Communications Centre (NCC) as the national signals intelligence capacity for the Republic of South Africa and authorises the Centre to collect and analyse signals in accordance with the national intelligence priorities adopted by Cabinet. It will strengthen controls and regulations relating to the interception of communication thus providing greater protection for the law abiding public.
Now why do I think this will ultimately be designed to stop leaks of potentially embarrassing information to the press.The Protection of Information Bill will put in place a framework for the protection of state information that will be grounded in the Constitutional principles of openness and transparency. In addition, the Bill aims to fill the existing legal gap in relation to threats faced by the state in the course of intelligence gathering by unauthorised entities where the security of the state may be undermined.