Making access to information a reality is the title of the strategy developed by the Oversight Commission of Access to Information (OCAI) and was officially launched on 13th of August 2017 at the Government Media and Information Center (GMIC).
In this conference, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, Executive Director of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Nasir Ahmad Durrani, Minister of Rural Rehabilitation and Development, Seyeed Mozhgan Mostafavi Admin and Finance Deputy Minister of Ministry of Finance, and Sayed Fazel Hossein Sancharaki, Deputy Minister of Information and Culture Affairs, James Wasserston, President of the Institute of Democracy of the International, chairman and commissioners of OCAI, commissioners for Administrative Reform and Civil Services, Maiwand Rahyab and Rabineh Hamdard, members of the Women’s Network, state non-state officials, civil society activists and journalists participated.
In the beginning, Seyed Ikaram Afzali, the chairman of the OCAI welcomed the participants in his opening remarks and highlighted the status of access to information over the past 15 years and added: on international level, civil society organizations as the main actors led the states toward transparency. These institutions have fought for justice in order to make the governments responsive, to empower citizens to demand information, to strengthen preemptive disclosure of information, and to commit on easier ways of access to information. Therefore, the civil society’s role has indeed been as a linkage between the public and state authorities. Although, the Afghan government has taken the first steps in this direction, but yet a lot of efforts have be put together to make access to information right public. Undoubtedly, the involvement and cooperation of civil society and the media is key to achieve this target.
Then Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, the executive director of the NUG, officially inaugurated the national strategy of access to information and implied in his opening remarks that: all state institutions should facilitate the process of access to information for the public and those who are in charge should receive capacity building training’s as well as the required support by relevant entities so that public could have access to information promptly upon their need.
Followed by Mr. Nasir Ahmad, Sayedah Mojhgan Mostafavi, James Waserston, Maiwand Rahyab, Danish kharokhel and Robina Hamdard who respectively gave their speeches on the issue.Speakers talkedabout activities on access to information, problems in their field and their future plans, and committed themselves to helping and cooperating the commission in the implementation of this national strategy.
At the end of the session, questions raised by the attendees were covered by the speakers and OCAI commissioners as well as listening to the comments suggestions and feedback to better use in the future strategies.