Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Guardian ordered not to report on Parliament

Democracy is entirely dependent on a well-informed citizenry. Free speech and a free press is vital to democracy's continued healthy functioning.

Therefore, the legal gagging order against the Guardian reporting on an MP's question in Parliament is absolutely deplorable. The Spectator speculates what the gag could be about - of course, we have no idea until the gag is lifted. Here is the key part of The Spectator's report:

"Remarkable, even by the appalling standards of our libel laws and addled judiciary. This appears to be the question in, er, question:

From Parliament.uk, “Questions for Oral or Written Answer beginning on Tuesday 13 October 2009″

N Paul Farrelly (Newcastle-under-Lyme): To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of legislation to protect (a) whistleblowers and (b) press freedom following the injunctions obtained in the High Court by (i) Barclays and Freshfields solicitors on 19 March 2009 on the publication of internal Barclays reports documenting alleged tax avoidance schemes and (ii) Trafigura and Carter-Ruck solicitors on 11 September 2009 on the publication of the Minton report on the alleged dumping of toxic waste in the Ivory Coast, commissioned by Trafigura."

The Guardian reported last month on how Trafigura attempted to cover up the dumping of toxic waste in one of the worst pollution disasters in recent history

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