Universal Access to Information (IDUAI 2022) Ensuring Participation

Wroskhop: Universal Access to Infomration (IDUAI 2022) Ensuring Participation, Accountability
and Good Governance through RTI
Date: 27 September 2022
District: Zaiqa Shinwari Hotel Kooza Alpurai, District Shangla, KP

Summary :

Transparency International Pakistan in collaboration with Rural Development Organization organized one day workshop in District Shangla, KP province on 27th September 2022 on the occasion of Universal Access to Information Day 2022.

The workshop was attended by 39 participants including youth, teachers, general public and community mobilisers. The aim of the workshop was to raise awareness and brief the participants about the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Act 2013, and its salient features and its importance in the context of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly focusing on SDG 16: inclusive and accountable governance.

The session started with the recitation from the Holy Quran. Mr Rasheed Ahmad, activist among the participants, recited the verses from the Holy Quran. After the recitation, a short introduction of the participants was held, where each member introduced himself/herself.

Moving on, Facilitator Rural Development Organization Buner, Mr. Ahmad Hussain briefed the participants through PowerPoint presentation about the protection of the fundamental Human Rights in the Constitution of Pakistan. He sensitized the participants by educating them about RTI (KP Right to Information Act 2013) which was enacted on 31st Oct 2013 and has a key important in fostering good governance in the province.

The participants were briefed about the definition of Applicant, Information, Public Bodies, Public Information Officer, Information Commission, RTI application, and RTI Complaint. Afterwards, the participants were informed about the type of information (under section 5) citizens can obtain from the public bodies through filing RTI application to Public Information Officers. Mr. Ahmad Hussain also briefed about the exempted information, details about public bodies, how to write RTI request, and the functioning of the Information Commission.

 Mr. Gul Wahid, Co-facilitator from RDOm briefed the participants about the RTI application format which is to be written in simple language. He also discussed in detail the draft RTI request prepared by TI Pakistan for the participants. Furthermore, Mr. Gul Wahid discussed in detail proactive disclosure provision in KP Right to Information law, and the functions of the Information Commission in order to process RTI complaint.

During the workshop, participants asked various questions from the trainers, which were answered to their satisfaction.

At the end of the training, workshop participants made a commitment to submit at least one application to the public body for obtaining information, and encourage others to enhance the demand side for the effective implementation of RTI in Pakistan.