Chakwera to press for Information Bill enactment

Leader of opposition in Parliament, Lazarous Chakwera and the Media, Information and Communications Committee of Parliament says will lobby for enactment of the much waited Access to Information Bill (ATI) during upcoming meeting of Parliament.

Chakwera: We want Information bill to be tables so that we can pass it

Chakwera: We want Information bill to be tables so that we can pass it

Members of the Bwaila Media Club (BMC), on Wednesday had an audience Chakwera, to seek his support in pushing for the tabling of the bill and objectively pass it amid delay ‘tactics’ from government to take the bill to the forthcoming meeting of Parliament.

Few weeks ago in Salima, President Peter Mutharika promised to take the bill to the first meeting of the 46th Session of Parliament which begins this Friday, saying all the processes were finalized.

This pronouncement was reiterated by Minister of Information Jappie Mhango during the recent meeting of some Cabinet Ministers and Members of Civil Society in Lilongwe.

However, the promises are unlikely to be met now as Leader of House in the National Assembly, Francis Kasaila disclosed to journalists on Monday in Lilongwe that the bill still awaits final inspection by Cabinet.

He said it is not on the list of the business for the next meeting of National Assembly.

Chakwera shared BMC concern over the delays by government to take the bill to parliament and promised to “seriously” take the responsibility of encouraging all members from his party and others in opposition on how they can help push for the tabling of the bill.

“I would say that am with you” he said, “The message you brought has been received and warmly so. And that if Lord willing we should even incorporate your concerns in some of things that we say.”

The opposition leader also underscored that Access to Information Bill is very important.

He said the bill empowers people to have information that is needed in order for them to appreciate what their own government is doing. And that with comprehensive view of what is happening they are able to make informed decisions.

“Let information that the public needs to have be made available. Not just on demand… but when such is needed however, there should be a backing of the law that says you have that right to access that information,” said Chakwera.

“We are with you,” he affirmed .“I am particularly would love for the information to be available to anyone because issues of accountability and transparency are important to us all” added the opposition leader with emphasis that information is critical in an age “like ours”

In his remarks Chairperson for the Media, Information and Communications Committee of Parliament, Samuel Kawale, said was “disappointed and discouraged” to learn that Government is keeping on delaying the bill which has stalled for so many years.

“If there were issues that needed to be addressed they should have been brought earlier on, so that we sit down again, talk over them and make sure that all the grey areas are sorted out” he said

“As Committee, our major task from now on, is to work alongside with media houses and other stakeholders to lobby government to make sure that this bill is tabled in parliament and passed into law” assured Kawale

Meanwhile, leader of the Bwaila Media Club delegation, Steve Chilundu has expressed his profound gratitude for the promising remarks from the Leader of Opposition and the Chairperson for the Media, Information and Communications of Parliament.

Chilundu said BMC will continue to meet with various stakeholders to ask them lobby government to table and pass the Access to Information Bill during the Meeting of National Assembly which begins this week.

Bwaila Media Club has also issued a statement expressing concern over, government recent ambiguity and dilly dallying in its commitment to table and pass the bill.

Government spokesman, Jappie Mhango stresses that the political will that Access to Information Bill should be tabled during the November 2015 sitting of the National Assembly 2015 has not changed.

“The fact of the matter is that the processing of the Bill is at a very advanced stage, and everything is being done in keeping with the President’s commitment to the people of Malawi.

“It is worth reminding the public that passing of the Access to Information legislation was part of the campaign promises of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which was given the mandate to govern. As such passing of that Bill is one of the priorities of Government,” Mhango said.

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17 thoughts on “Chakwera to press for Information Bill enactment”

  1. marvel chikondi says:

    Chakwera can push all that he wants but if he is doing it in good faith i have no problem but if it is to advance the fall of the DPP then i am afraid he will be digging his own grave when his time comes. Chitani zabwino lero posadziwa za mawa.

    1. Winford Saka says:

      Let Him Wait To Be Laughed In 2092.Its When Malawians Will Begin To Know Him.

  2. The Patriot says:

    Go Chakwera, go MCP. Government is serious business osamangokhalira kuyenda ndi ma bloated delegation ku New York and dreaming of a private jet! Asakufuna kutsutsidwa asiye udindo! Malawi can be a better place without the current leadership, we experienced it in 2012. When DPP got out of government things improved from day 1! Mabvuto athu onse ndi chifukwa cha DPP!

  3. Ojambula says:

    Go ahead Dr. Chakwera and push for it, we want it passed ASAP.

  4. Commenter says:

    Seriously!!!

  5. Ndata says:

    DPP supporting fools, Dr Laz did not say he table the bill but he will push that this idiotic gvt should table it and parliament passes it. Kumamvetsa nkhani musayambe kulemba ma nonsense. No wonder your clueless gay does the same.

    1. Winford Saka says:

      Yours Was More Idiotic Than Ours.

  6. For sure the Government can not table this bill Chakwera is just wasting his time these are crooks

  7. ngonoliwa says:

    Chakwera is a big LIAR of hybrid variety. After all you are a pastor by training not a POLITICIAN. Go back to church and lie to congregation about heaven life. You are useless. Ife a DPP tinalimbana ndi JB ali m’boma mpaka kumugwetsa pansi iye mpaka kuthawa dziko liri lake.Watisiira dziko ife amathanyula the Americanas. Hehehede dziko likukoma bwanji. Ngati JB walithawa dziko yekha kuli bwanji iwe, kapuchi wachabechabe. When did you start politics? MCP will never rule this country as long as DPP is ruling.

  8. Mr Pheee says:

    I can see Mr Chakwera is serious with these dramatic leaders they call themselves DPP,
    I never see Chakweras face look like this all my time i have been close with him, but now DPP must know that this is high time for serious issues osamangoti fwe fwe fwe mkamwa mopanda mano kikkkkkkkkk, osaiwalanso paja tikhala ndi nthawi yoti bububuyu ayankheko timafunso tingapo paja eti O Chakwera? enough is enough tatopa ndi zopusazi, sangalankhule mopusa kumati MCP inalephera kutukula Malawi, anali kuti eyeyu?kanundu kapena ma Rider?

  9. mapwevupwevu says:

    Ha o Chakwera! Go back to preaching! Opposition can not table a bill in parliament.

  10. Dalitso says:

    At Mike Mulumbe, read church history and you will be amazed to discover that from way back; church and state were one. Secondly, u will dicover that many pioneers of freedom fighters have been leaders in church like pastors, bishops etc. Never be misled kuyangana mbali imodzi kumati agalatiya. Men of God have a duty to see that freedom in a country is enjoyed by all. If it was not pastoral letter that was written by Roman leadership in Malawi, where could things be?

  11. mike mulumbe says:

    Who can bring that bill in the chamber is it not government why does the leader of opposition fool himself that he can bring the bill into the house mgalatiya

  12. Achimidzimidzi says:

    Please, Dr Chakwera, support this bill. Information is important.

  13. SONG says:

    Good to hear that the bill will be tabled.

  14. Dominic says:

    There is nothing to lobby for – the bill will be tabled in next parliament seating. Please learn to focus on real issues, it has been clearly communicated to the nation that the bill will be tabled now – no question of organizing a meeting for the same. There is nothing to talk about. Peter himself said it point blank – where were you the so called media when this communication was made in Salima?

  15. ondo says:

    Tateloni a MCP chifukwa mbava za DPP zkumatinamiza kwambiri,kaya usinini kapena nditi nkhama zikamamuyabwa Mathanyula amaona ngati kukanda kwake ndi kunamiza anthu,m’malo motenga mwala kapena wire brush. MCP mpata ndiumenewu chifukwa Mathanyula palibe chomwe akudziwa.

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