International experts on right to information (RTI) have stressed ensuring the integrity of information commissions and recognising the governments as the key stakeholders in the information giving process at an event in Dhaka.
Speaking at a discussion in the capital on Friday, RTI experts from South Asia adopted a unanimous resolution that says all the governments in the region must demonstrate their commitment to transparency and accountability by taking immediate steps to effectively implement right to information laws, according to a press release from Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST).
Members and staff of information commissions, along with lawyers, journalists and civil society members from six countries - Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Kenya and South Africa – met in Dhaka on Thursday and Friday to discuss the RTI issues.
Dr Md Golam Rahman, chief information commissioner of Bangladesh, observed that legislative measures are required to ensure speedy disposal of appeals and complaints when designated officers of the institutions concerned do not provide the sought for information within the statutory time limit of 48 hours.
Information Commissioner Dr Khurshida Begum Sayeed said developing a culture of transparency was crucial for the successful implementation of the RTI Act.
The Social Architects (TSA), Research Initiative Bangladesh (RIB) and BLAST hosted the meeting.