The dream of having Access to Information Bill tabled in Parliament during this sitting of Parliament is slowly turning to a nightmare following revelations that Cabinet Ministers have rejected the bill, saying it is containing several irregularities.

Inside sources who confided to FaceofMalawi said the bill was rejected on Tuesday during a meeting held at Kamuzu Palace in the capital Lilongwe.
Minister of Information, Tourism and Civic Education Jappie Mhango confirmed of the development in a statement made available to FOM.

In the statement, Mhango said the bill has been sent back for drafting, saying it contained several errors which need to be ironed out before tabling.

“Government wishes to inform the public that during its meeting on Tuesday, November 17, 2015, Cabinet considered the Access to Information Bill, and directed its Committee on Legal Affairs and Constitutional Affairs to quickly resolve inconsistencies therein. It is the intention of Government that we have a good and balanced law that is representative of all sectors of society.

“The Cabinet Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs has urgently undertaken to address the inconsistencies in the Bill in coordination with the Ministry of Information, Tourism and Civic Education; and the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs,” reads in part the statement.

He added: “The public is hereby assured that Government is doing everything possible to ensure that the Bill is ready for presentation in the National Assembly during the current session.”

Reacting to the development, Media Council of Malawi Chairperson Thom Khanje expressed shock over the move taken by government.

Khanje urged all concerned parties across the country to join hands and push for this bill.

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