• Version
  • Download 0
  • File Size 662.40 KB
  • File Count 1
  • Create Date September 6, 2020
  • Last Updated September 6, 2020

Cap. 10:33 No. 1/2020
ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS
PART I
Preliminary
Section
1. Short title.
2. Interpretation.
3. Objects of Act.
PART II
Access to Information
4. Duty to create, keep, organise and maintain information.
5. Duty to disclose information.
6. Act not to apply to certain public entities and persons.
PART III
Requests for Access to Information
7. Requests for access to information.
8. Response to request.
9. Extension of time.
10. Deemed refusal.
11. Deferment of access.
12. Information that cannot be found or does not exist.
13. Forms of access.
14. Severability.
15. Access to health or other records.
16. Language of access.
17. Fees.
18. Reports to Commission.
19. Entities may grant greater access to information.
PART IV
Grounds for Refusal of Access to Information
20. Refusal of access.
21. Protection of personal information of third party who is a natural person.
22. Protection of commercial information of third party and private entity.
23. Protection of certain other confidential information of third party.
24. Protection of safety of individuals and property.
25. Protection of information in bail proceedings, law enforcement and other legal
proceedings.
26. Protection of legally privileged information.
27. Protection of defence, security and international relations of State.
28. Protection of economic interests and financial welfare of State and commercial
interests of public entities.
29. Protection of research information of third party or entity.
30. Operations of public entities.
31. Manifestly frivolous or vexatious requests, or requests involving substantial and
unreasonable diversion of resources.
Freedom of Information
2
No. 1/2020 Cap. 10:33
PART V
Notification and Intervention of Third Parties
Section
32. Notice to third parties.
33. Representations or consent by third parties.
34. Decision on representations for refusal and notice thereof.
PART VI
Appeals to Commission
35. Right to appeal.
36. Procedure on appeal.
37. Notice to and representations by third parties.
38. Decision on appeal and notification thereof.
PART VII
General
39. Liability.
40. Regulations.
41. Repeal of [Chapter 10:27] and savings.
2
Freedom of Information
3
Cap. 10:33 No. 1/2020
Printed by the Government Printer, Harare
ACT
TO additionally provide for the constitutional rights of expression, and
freedom of the media; to provide further for the right of access to
information held by entities in the interest of public accountability or for
the exercise or protection of a right; to repeal the Access to Information
and Protection of Privacy Act [Chapter 10:27]; and to provide for matters
connected therewith.
WHEREAS section 61 of the Constitution provides as follows—
“61 Freedom of expression and freedom of the media
(1) Every person has the right to freedom of expression, which includes—
(a) freedom to seek, receive and communicate ideas and other information;
(b) freedom of artistic expression and scientific research and creativity; and
(c) academic freedom.
(2) Every person is entitled to freedom of the media, which freedom includes
protection of the confidentiality of journalists’ sources of information.
(3) Broadcasting and other electronic media of communication have freedom
of establishment, subject only to State licensing procedures that—
(a) are necessary to regulate the airwaves and other forms of signal
distribution; and
(b) are independent of control by government or by political or commercial
interests.
(4) All State-owned media of communication must—
ZIMBABWE
Freedom of Information
4
No. 1/2020 Cap. 10:33
(a) be free to determine independently the editorial content of their broadcasts
or other communications;
(b) be impartial; and
(c) afford fair opportunity for the presentation of divergent views and
dissenting opinions.
(5) Freedom of expression and freedom of the media exclude—
(a) incitement to violence;
(b) advocacy of hatred or hate speech;
(c) malicious injury to a person’s reputation or dignity; or
(d) malicious or unwarranted breach of a person’s right to privacy.
AND WHEREAS section 62 of the Constitution provides as follows—
“62 Access to information
(1) Every Zimbabwean citizen or permanent resident, including juristic persons
and the Zimbabwean media, has the right of access to any information held by the State
or by any institution or agency of government at every level, in so far as the information
is required in the interests of public accountability.
(2) Every person, including the Zimbabwean media, has the right of access to
any information held by any person, including the State, in so far as the information
is required for the exercise or protection of a right.
(3) Every person has a right to the correction of information, or the deletion
of untrue, erroneous or misleading information, which is held by the State or any
institution or agency of the government at any level, and which relates to that person.
(4) Legislation must be enacted to give effect to this right, but may restrict access
to information in the interests of defence, public security or professional confidentiality,
to the extent that the restriction is fair, reasonable, necessary and justifiable in a
democratic society based on openness, justice, human dignity, equality and freedom.”;
AND WHEREAS it is desirable, in accordance with the Constitution, to make
further provision in regard to access to information;
NOW, THEREFORE, be it enacted by the Parliament and the President of
Zimbabwe as follows—
PART I
Preliminary
1 Short title
This Act may be cited as the Freedom of Information Act [Chapter 10:33].
2 Interpretation
In this Act—
“applicant” means a person requesting access to information in terms of this
Act;
“Commission” means the Zimbabwe Media Commission established by section
248 of the Constitution;
“entity” means a private entity, public entity, public commercial entity or
statutory office;
“information” includes but is not limited to any original or copy of documentary
material irrespective of its physical characteristics, such as records,
Freedom of Information
5
Cap. 10:33 No. 1/2020
correspondence, fact, opinion, advice, memorandum, data, statistics,
book, drawing, plan, map, diagram, photograph, audio or visual record,
and any other tangible or intangible material, regardless of the form or
medium in which it is held, in the possession or under the control of the
entity to which a request is made under this Act;
“information officer” means the principal officer of an entity or any such person
designated by the principal officer to act on his or her behalf;
“media” has the meaning given to it under the Zimbabwe Media Commission
Act [Chapter 10:34];
“Minister” means the Minister responsible for information or any other Minister
to whom the President may, from time to time, assign the administration
of this Act;
“personal information” means information about an identifiable individual,
and includes—
(a) information relating to the race, gender, sex, pregnancy, marital
status, national, ethnic or social origin, colour, sexual orientation,
age, physical or mental health, well-being, disability, religion,
conscience, belief, culture, language and birth of the individual;
(b) information relating to the education or the medical, criminal or
employment history of the individual or information relating to
financial transactions in which the individual has been involved;
(c) any identifying number, symbol or other particular assigned to the
individual;
(d) the address, fingerprints or blood type of the individual;
(e) the personal opinions, views or preferences of the individual, except
where they are about another individual or about a proposal for a
grant, an award or a prize to be made to another individual;
(f) correspondence sent by the individual that is implicitly or explicitly
of a private or confidential nature or further correspondence that
would reveal the contents of the original correspondence;
(g) the views or opinions of another individual about the individual;
(h) the views or opinions of another individual about a proposal for a
grant, an award or a prize to be made to the individual, but excluding
the name of the other individual where it appears with the views or
opinions of the other individual; and
(i) the name of the individual where it appears with other personal
information relating to the individual or where the disclosure of the
name itself would reveal information about the individual;
but excludes information about an individual who has been dead for
more than twenty years;
“principal officer”, in relation to any entity, means the person who is the
executive head, by whatever name known, of the entity concerned, or
any person acting in that capacity;
“private entity” means an entity other than a public entity, public commercial
entity or statutory office;
“public commercial entity” means a company or other commercial entity which
is owned or controlled by the State or by a person on behalf of the State;
“public entity” has the meaning given to it in the Public Finance Management
Act [Chapter 22:19];
“responsible person” means the principal officer or one of several officers of—
(a) a public entity;
Freedom of Information
6
No. 1/2020 Cap. 10:33
(b) a public commercial entity;
whose duty it is to create, keep, organise and maintain information on
behalf of the entity;
“Secretary” means the Secretary of the Zimbabwe Media Commission;
“third party”, in relation to a request for access to information, means any
person, group of persons or organisation other than the person who made
the request;
“trade secret” means information, including a formula, pattern, compilation,
programme, device, product, method, technique or process, that is used,
or may be used, in business or for any commercial advantage and—
(a) derives independent economic value, actual or potential, from not
being generally known to the public or to other persons who can
obtain economic value from its disclosure or use; and
(b) is the subject of reasonable efforts to prevent it from becoming
generally known; and
(c) the disclosure of which would result in harm or improper benefit.
3 Objects of Act
The objects of this Act are—
(a) to give effect to the right of access to information in accordance with the
Constitution; and
(b) to establish voluntary and mandatory mechanisms or procedures to
give effect to the right of access to information so as to facilitate swift,
inexpensive and simple access to information; and
(c) to promote transparency, accountability and effective governance by
taking any steps necessary to—
(i) educate or inform the public of their rights in terms of this Act; and
(ii) ensure that appropriate assistance is afforded to members of the
public seeking to exercise their right of access to information in
order to facilitate the exercise of the right.
PART II
Access to Information
4 Duty to create, keep, organise and maintain information
Every responsible person or holder of a statutory office shall cause to be created,
kept, organised and maintained information—
(a) in the interests of public accountability; or
(b) in the exercise or protection of a right.
5 Duty to disclose information
Subject to this Act, every public entity, public commercial entity or holder of a
statutory office shall have a written information disclosure policy through which it
discloses information in the interests of public accountability or that is required for the
exercise or protection of a right.
6 Act not to apply to certain public entities and persons
This Act

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *