South African politicians on Saturday joined hundreds of people who marched outside parliament to protest against the controversial secrecy bill which will be tabled in parliament next week.
The ruling African National Congress (ANC) used its majority to push through the Protection of State Information Bill which proposes penalties for disclosure and possession of material classified secret.
Former intelligence minister Ronnie Kasrils and Cape Town premier Helen Zille were among activists opposed to the bill.
“This all-embracing secrecy bill... we smell and suspect is not about the real secrets that must be defended, but it's to prevent those silly leaders who have egg on their face, who have been exposed by the media for doing foolish and embarrassing things,” Kasrils told the crowd outside parliament.
Among such things, he said, were “misusing and abusing” tenders and contracts as well as taxpayers' money.