Simply voting every five years does not a democracy make
Policy-makers who do not invite or embrace public participation, or ensure transparency, are in violation of our Constitution
The subjugation of black South Africans to arbitrary, discretionary rule by officialdom and the whims of politicians was one of the hallmarks of apartheid. It is no surprise, therefore, that SA’s 1996 Constitution contains provisions designed to ensure this would never happen again. Section 195 of the Constitution requires that the public administration respond to the needs of the people and encourage the participation of the public in policy-making. It further requires transparency and the provision of timely, accessible, and accurate information. Section 33 of the Constitution gives all South Africans the right to just administrative action that is reasonable and procedurally fair. With these justiciable provisions contained in our highest law, one wonders how it is possible that the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services (DTPS) managed to publish its Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Policy White Paper in October last year without having informed the p...
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