Windhoek-Parliament on Friday unveiled a new website designed to provide faster and easier public access to information on the political decisions taken by the elected representatives of the country’s citizens.
The new website, designed in a colourful and user-friendly format, was launched by Speaker of the National Assembly Professor Peter Katjavivi, who said the new website contains a comprehensive legal database, that holds all annotated laws of parliament.
“The new website is connected through a dedicated internet connection and access to the website is filtered by a firewall, “he said, adding that backup copies will be available to restore the website in an instant. Parliament also plans to identify an alternate location, where a mirror of the website will be located, he said.
Katjavivi said parliament, in collaboration with the National Planning Commission (NPC) and the Delegation of the European Union to Namibia, implemented a five-year Parliamentary Support Programme during 2012-2017, funded by the 10th European Development Fund and implemented by Konrad Adanauer Stiftung and Transtec Project Management.
He said the aim and objective of the initiative were to enhance public access to the laws in force in Namibia, as amended.
“This objective was advanced by the creation of a complete, accurate and current archive of all the laws and regulations of Namibia,” he said.
The project was supervised by the Parliamentary Support Programme.
The Legal Assistance Centre in Namibia prepared interpretation of the pre- and post-independence laws, as well as post-independence regulations for the site, he added.
Lexis Nexis interpreted the pre-independence regulations.
Katjavivi said the team updated the legal database by annotating the laws and regulations for the period January 2015 to August 2016. Lexis Nexis also trained parliamentary legal staff to interpret laws and regulations to ensure sustainability.
Katjavivi used the opportunity to commend the European Union for supporting parliament whenever the need arises.
He also thanked Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, Transtec project management, the Namibia University of Science and Technology, Interactive IT Solutions and Lexis Nexis for their support in ensuring that the initiative becomes a reality.
The Speaker also expressed his gratitude to Sabinet Online Ltd of South Africa, which provided free access to their database of past South African government gazettes for the purpose of the project, related to the annotated legal database.