Tuesday, March 22, 2011

STELLENBOSCH MUNICIPALITY "STALLS" OUR REQUEST OF ACCESS TO PUBLIC INFORMATION



On 09 February 2011, our attorneys made a request, in terms of Section 26 of the Promotion of Access to Public Information Act 2 of 2000 (PAIA), that Stellenbosch Municipality furnish us with information and answers to certain questions. The information that we are seeking, is in the best interests of the public, ratepayers, property owners, students and residents of Stellenbosch.

We paid the prescribed fee and Ateeqa Hoosain (Senior Legal Advisor Stellenbosch Municipality: ateeqah@stellenbosch.org) acknowledged receipt of the request, and the cheque payment, on 11 February 2011.
Our attorney's request, under PAIA, is to be found here  :


If you read "ANNEX A" on page 7 of the above document, it will be obvious to you, that the information we have requested from Stellenbosch Municipality is not only in the best public interest, but is also information that Stellenbosch Municipality should easily have at their disposal.

Under PAIA, Stellenbosch Municipality have to (by law)  furnish us with the requested information within 30 days of such request.

In this regard, Keith Ford (Information Officer Stellenbosch Municipality: keithf@stellenbosch.org) , has "extended"  the period by another 30 days.   See his letter by clicking on the link below.



With regards to the above, we have a few questions:-

  1. Why are Stellenbosch Municipality unable to provide us with answers to the questions that we put to them, under PAIA, on 09 February 2011.
  2. As the information that we have requested is information that they should have at their disposal, why have they been unable to adhere to our request within the given time period. (they have had 41 days which they have now extended by another 30 days !!) ?
  3. Why do they need more time ? What have they done to address this issue over the last 41 days?
  4. Why have they ignored our requests that they furnish us with copies of the minutes of our meeting of 24 January 2011?
  5. Why have they refused to answer the questions put to them by Norman McFarlane of Bolander newspaper ? Why have they attempted to 'coerce' him into a private, off the record meeting, rather than respond to him in writing ?
  6. Do they have something to hide ?
  7.  
    Perhaps you, the readers can shed some light on this ?  We value your opinions.














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