Gov’t to Withdraw Order To Increase Time To Keep Cabinet Documents Private from 20 to 70-Years


Government Senate Leader, Kamina Johnson Smith, says the Holness-administration will withdraw an order which proposes to extend the time in which Cabinet documents are made available to the public from the current 20 years to 70 years.

The order was tabled in the House of Representatives on Tuesday by Minister with responsibility for Information, Karl Samuda.

The order has drawn strong backlash from civil society.

Minister Johnson Smith says the order will be withdrawn at the next sitting of the Senate and the House.

She says the issue will be referred to a Joint Select Committee for further discussion.

The Cabinet Minister and Government Senate leader says consideration of  the treatment of confidential Cabinet documents was prompted by a recent Access to Information Request.

The request sought the release to the public of minutes from cabinet meetings during a period in the 1970’s.

Kamina Johnson Smith, Government Senate Leader speaking this morning with Nationwide’s Abka Fitz-Henley.

Abka Fitz-Henley is a multiple award-winning journalist who is currently the Senior Reporter at Nationwide News Network (NNN). His primary areas of focus are Court, Crime and Parliamentary proceedings. Fitz-Henley was recently recognized in the regional celebrity magazine publication Panache as “The Breaking News Boss”. At 21 years of age, following his 1st year in media, Fitz-Henley was recognized with the Young Journalist of the year award from The Press Association of Jamaica and went on to cop one of the country’s highest recognized journalism prizes, the Journalist of the Year Award. He’s also been awarded the prestigious Corporate Jamaica Broilers Fairplay 1st place Award for investigative journalism and is the recipient of the Caribbean Blog Award for coverage of the infamous Kartel murder trial. Fitz-Henley is also the recipient of the PM Youth Award for Excellence. Over the years, he has appeared as a guest on the BBC World Service and BBC London.

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