Controversial “spy bill” stokes rare public debate on civic surveillance

Pushing back: Journalists led civic society’s resistance to the original legislation PIC: PHATSIMO KAPENG
Pushing back: Journalists led civic society’s resistance to the original legislation PIC: PHATSIMO KAPENG

Government’s bid to introduce a highly contentious “spy bill” and the subsequent watering down of several clauses under pressure from multi-sectoral lobbyists, has brought the debate on civic surveillance into rare public attention.

Minister of Defence, Justice and Security, Kagiso Mmusi introduced the Criminal Procedure and Evidence (Controlled Investigations) Bill, 2022, to a special sitting of Parliament on a certificate of urgency in late January, explaining that fast-tracking the legislation was needed to adhere to the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The FATF, the world’s top supranational organisation on anti-money laundering, lifted its adverse listing of Botswana last October, three years after noting the country had significant structural and legislative deficiencies required to plug the flow of dirty money into and out of its economy.

Editor's Comment
A step in the right direction

That is indeed a welcome development, especially looking at the fact that the manual way of doing things is slowly disappearing and competency in the use of computers and other digital gadgets has become a must.The simple way of looking at it is just an example that almost all companies have gone completely digital and school leavers will be better placed after leaving school, because they will already be familiar with the use of computers.The...

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