Friday, July 17, 2009

Namibia: The Communications BIll allowing interception progresses through Parliament

[the namibian] THE debate in Parliament on the new Communications Bill, which had started on a hot note three weeks ago, ended on Tuesday in a low key manner.

The Bill, also dubbed the 'Spy Bill', provides for interception centres to be manned by the secret service who can then screen e-mails, short message service (sms) and internet usage, including internet banking of bank customers.

Swapo back bencher, Loide Kasingo, was the only and last speaker on Tuesday.

Kasingo said she supported the bill as it prepared Government to be "ready for anything" in case of possible threats. Information and Communications Technology Minister, Joel Kaapanda, announced that he would render his response to the debate next week on Thursday, July 13.

That date is the last day of the winter session of Parliament.

Just a minute earlier DTA Chairman Johan de Waal had requested the Minister to allow the Bill to be referred to a Parliamentary Standing Committee to scrutinise it in more detail and to produce recommendations on some issues on the first day of the next session in September.

Minister Kaapanda ignored De Waal's request.

Namibia: Communications Bill Debate Ends

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