Weekly news – 28 September 2018
Information is power. Information is also fundamental to make informed decisions. Where it’s not freely accessible, corruption can thrive and basic rights can be denied. People can hide corrupt acts behind a veil of secrecy.
On this International Right to Know Day we want to highlight how ensuring access to — and disclosure of — information can empower people and institutions to prevent and fight corruption.
Access to information is the right by law — often through freedom of information laws — to request key facts and data from the government. When that right to know is denied, we can’t hold decision makers or institutions to account for their actions, nor can we make informed choices when we vote.
But it’s a two-way process. Under law or in good faith, public officials, companies and organisations are required to proactively disclose information about what they do. We must use this information to make full use of our rights.
Nearly 120 countries have right to information (RTI) laws, however implementation is often patchy and many citizens don’t know about these laws or how to use them to their advantage. Even strong laws can be ineffective if the officials providing information are undertrained, too few or supporting a culture of secrecy.
This is why we urge you to find out about the laws in your country and exercise your right to information. If you want better access to information in your country, call on your government online, in person and through your local Transparency International chapter. Individuals can make changes with information, but first they must persuade governments to give access to information.
Exciting news! Hip-hop icon and activist yasiin bey (formerly known as Mos Def) will headline Fair Play: Live 2018, the international music event bringing together musicians from around the world to perform in support of social justice. Where? VEGA, Copenhagen, Denmark. When? 23 October 2018.
The world’s largest independent forum for fighting corruption will bring together more than 1500 participants from all over the world from 22-24 October in Copenhagen, Denmark – register now or get your press accreditation.
We’re proud to present the catalogue of Films for Transparency, a film festival focussing on anti-corruption that will take place from 20-25 October in Copenhagen, alongside the 18th IACC.
News from Transparency International
The right to information is vital for preventing corruption. To mark International Right to Know Day, we are launching a report on eleven Asia Pacific countries and calling on their governments to make right to information a priority.
An ethical cloud has been cast over the blue skies and white sand beaches of the Maldives – the idyllic tropical holiday destination is ensnared in a scandal in which at least US$79 million have been embezzled. It implicates local businessmen, international hotel operators, and even leads all the way to outgoing President Abdulla Yameen.
New on Voices for Transparency
How a simple information request is a powerful social accountability tool: lessons from Pakistan and the Maldives
117 countries have right to information laws in place. Still, a culture of secrecy prevails the public sector in many of these countries. Find out how citizens and civil society in Pakistan and the Maldives use the right to information to hold governments accountable.
This week marks the third anniversary of the Sustainable Development Goals. How can those implementing them make sure that corruption is not standing in their way? Here are seven things that civil society organisations can do.
What happens when you take a group of young people and give them a taste of citizen power? Short answer: a lot.
Source: Transparency International
Access to information is the right by law — often through freedom of information laws — to request key facts and data from the government.