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     February  16,  2016



KP Ehtisab Commission refused to provide information under RTI law.

Chitral Times Report

Peshawar:: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa assembly should support amendments proposed by the KP information commission, stated by Inayatullah Khan, senior local government minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The amendments are related to inclusion of Peshawar High Court in the ambit of law, penalties on provision of false information by public bodies, empowering Public Information Officers (PIOs). The minister further stated that despite many notices sent to the federal government by KP government, the RTI law has still not extended to Provincially Administered Tribal Areas (PATA). He further stated that government is duty bound to ensure proactive disclosure of information under KP RTI law. He was speaking in seminar ‘Implementation of the KP RTI law, Progress Challenges and Way Forward’, organized jointly by Centre for Governance and Public Accountability (CGPA) and KP information commission.

The KP chief information commissioner, Sahibzada Khalid, briefed participants that three generation of public servants have served under the official secret Act. Now suddenly, the things took a turn and the disclosure of information considered to be illegal is mandatory now. He showed his encouragement about civil society and media reaction when the KP assembly was excluded from the ambit of RTI law. He demanded such rigorous campaigns for implementation of the KP RTI law as well. He also stated that KP Ehtisab Commission refused to provide information on the notice sent by the KP information commission, and the complaint is still pending.

Justice (R) Abudul Matin, KP information commissioner briefed the participants about the proposed amendments to KP RTI law. He stated that if the KP assembly approved the amendments, the high ups would not be able to compel PIOs not to provide information under the law. Professor Kalimullah, KP information commission stated that main challenge in the implementation of the RTI law has been maintenance and indexing of record by public bodies. In many cases, the record is so purely maintained that PIOs can’t provide information, even if they want. He stressed on the civil society and media role on effective implementation of KP RTI law.

Mr. Abid Majeed demonstrated how the KP information department has ensured proactive disclosure of information through website. He stated that even his salary and other privileges, staff list, budget, advertisements for newspapers are posted on website as required under KP RTI law. Muhammad Anwar, Executive Director of CGPA presented brief analysis of the complaints received by the information commission. He stated that out of 1595 complaints received by the information commission, 373 (23%) are related to education sector, followed by health sector 172 complaints (11%). He stated that most of the complaints are related to the information which should be proactively disclosed by the public bodies.



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