WhatsApp Messages and British Government’s Controversy

WhatsApp Messages and British Government's Controversy
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The British government is currently faced with a High Court challenge over the use of Whatsapp and instant messaging.

While official guidelines have mandated ministers to ensure that instant messages on an internal system are deleted, the group disagreed.

A group known to be transparency campaigners has argued the illegality of deleting such messages as they might pose to be useful for the public’s consumption.

They described such a policy as “unlawful” and currently, the argument has been taken up to the High court for a final ruling.

Ministers in Britain are banned from using WhatsApp and also private email for discussing government business.

The director of a campaigning law group Foxglove, Mr Cori Crider, told BBC News that the rules were not being followed and were incoherent.

“This is the first case of its kind, and it raises a critical issue in modern government. We’re doing this to defend the integrity of our public debate. We can’t learn from history if the evidence has vanished into thin air.”

However, the group stood their ground by saying that it was illegal and against the Public Records Act 1958. The law required that legal checks should be made on messages in case they are needed to be kept for the public interest.

But for the government to ban Government’s officials from keeping messages in their internal system, clearly violates the Public Records Act 1950.

The law of not allowing ministers to keep messages in their internal system equally represented a threat to the British public records and Freedom of Information laws.

A spokesman added: “Ministers will use a range of modern forms of communication for discussions, in line with legislative requirements, and taking into account government guidance.”

Angela Rayner, the Labour’s deputy leader, said that ministers “must not govern by private messages that are then deleted”, adding: “This is completely undemocratic and an attack on transparency and accountability.”

Leading the country with messages that are the. deleted is undemocratic. It should be heard of or spoken about in any part of the world.

Government should ensure transparency and allow the freedom of information law to be put into practice.

Banning ministers from keeping WhatsApp messages or private messages as it regards public interest is a big blow to our democracy.

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