HELL NO! Opposition group takes issue with 70-year ‘Cabinet secrecy’ plan

Opposition affiliate Patriots is calling on the Holness administration to withdraw a resolution seeking to extend the period of the release of Cabinet documents from 20 to 70 years.

The Patriots is expressing concern that this move by the Prime Minister will increase what it describes as the already low level of trust most Jamaicans have in government. According to the patriot, corruption in government is at an all-time high and growing. It says transparency limits opportunities for corruption.

According to media reports, the Prime Minister’s resolution seeks to extend the facility provided in Section 6(2) of the Access to Information Act . The mentioned Section allows for the exemption from disclosure of certain documents for 20 years “or such shorter or longer period as the Minister May specify by order, subject to affirmative resolution”.

The Patriots is concerned that the proposed extension will ensure persons making decisions in Cabinet will never be around to face scrutiny for the consequences of their actions. The group says this runs counter to the level of transparency and probity expected in a modern democratic society.