The vote by the National Assembly on whether to adopt the justice committee’s recommendations on the appointment of the Information Regulator under the Protection of Personal Information Act 2013 (POPI) was postponed on 26 May 2016, due to the lack of present members of parliament to secure a majority vote. 201 votes are required to secure a majority vote in the National Assembly. There was a total of 257 parliament members present, with 198 voting in favour and 59 voting against the recommendations. The new vote will take place once parliament reopens after the local government elections on 3 August 2016.
On 16 May 2016, the committee recommended the appointment of former IEC chairperson Pansy Tlakula as the chairperson of the Information Regulator. The committee also recommended Johannes Weapond and advocate Lebohang Stroom for full-time appointments to the Information Regulator Board, and Sizwe Snail and Professor Tana Pistorius for part-time appointments.
The postponement does not mean that POPI implementation and compliance should be placed on the back-burner. This is a good opportunity to properly identify and prioritise all actions required.