Leader of the opposition in parliament Brian Mundubila has urged the UPND government to enact the access to information bill saying it shouldn’t use the PFs failure to do it as an excuse.

In an interview Mundubila said he expected the bill to be presented before the national assembly once it resumes sitting.

He said the new dawn government should also make amendments to provisions it was uncomfortable with when in opposition.

“The expectations now are the Access to Information Bill; we expect that to come we are hoping that amendments to the cyber security acts should be able to come on account of the fact that the UPND really fought against cyber security act. We expect that in this session, they could make amendments to whatever provisions they were uncomfortable with at that time. The public order bill, we expect it. I also think they should bring out bills that speak empowerment to the local citizens,” he said.

“Remember the legislation assists government to govern because procedure if you may allow me is that government converts its promises into policies. When you look at the policies, there are other parts of the policies that can be dealt with in administration. there are other parts of the policies that can be dealt with in legislation. So, for government to govern properly, to be able to bring about the intended result arising from the promises, it is mostly through legislation.”

When asked why the pf failed to enact the ATI bill, Mundubila said the former ruling party should now be expected to have done everything at once.

“You see you do not expect the pf to do everything at the same time. There are so many things they did. So, I think that even for our friends in the UPND need to start from somewhere. There is no need to continue going back, you didn’t do it why do you want us to do it’ we want you to do it because the Zambian people voted for you. They believed your story when you said you are going to enact the access to information bill,” he said.

Mundubila said Zambians should not struggle to get information on various matters regarding the operations of government.

“So, for instance, we expect that there should be some legislation revolving around the mining sector so that there is more participation by local Zambians. Zambians should be protected; Zambians should be empowered with mining rights going forward. So, we are looking at laws that will speak to empowerment, laws that will speak to freedom of speech, freedom of association, freedom of expression in so far as the public order act is concerned. Then access to information bill so that there is transparency in the operations of government. The much talked about transparency can only come about if people have access to information, so that we don’t struggle to get information like over the $50 million procurement of fertilizer by ministry of agriculture,” said Mundubila.

“We should not struggle for instance to get information on what conditionalities we signed for under the IMF. We should not struggle to get information on AFRICOM, we must have information on the matter. I think that with the law in place, it will be easier for you and I to get information and know. So far there are a number of information, things that are being done and are shrouded in secrecy. So, for us to properly understand what is going on, we need to ensure that we have this information”.

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