Wednesday, June 6, 2012

FOI Update: Senate tackles Freedom of Information Bill

Media groups and advocates have been pushing for the Freedom of Information bill for some 15 years already. Finally, the senate is set to tackle the much awaited and highly anticipated bill. Below are some of the latest news clips on the update:

FOI bill reaches Senate plenary 



MANILA, Philippines - Sen. Teofisto Guingona on Monday vowed full support for the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill because he believes that people can work with government for reforms and accountability only if they are armed with relevant information.


“If we want people to effectively participate in government, transparent and accessible information are vital. An FOI law is both a blessing and a challenge to good governance. If people have the right information, they must learn to use the same to contribute to nation-building,” Guingona said.

Guingona’s full support for the FOI law stems largely from his belief that access to information must not depend on the absolute discretion or even on the whims and caprices of heads of government agencies.
(Click here to read more)



Information bill gains ground as Senate starts plenary talks


"Government is an instrument owned by the people, and all information in the custody of the State should be available for the people to access," Senator Gregorio B. Honasan, public information and mass media committee chairman, said in his sponsorship speech, recommending approval on second reading of the Freedom of Information (FoI) bill. Senate Bill (SB) No. 3183 or the proposed People’s Ownership of Government Information (POGI) Act of 2012, mainly adopted the Executive’s proposal that was transmitted to Congress in January. (Click here to read more)


22 senators endorse FOI bill; House move awaited


Twenty-two senators have signed a committee report submitted by Sen. Gregorio Honasan endorsing plenary approval of the long-awaited Freedom of Information bill, a move seen to put pressure on the House of Representatives, which has yet to hold hearings on its counterpart version of the bill.



“Only when the people are empowered with information and the truth can there be genuine democracy and ownership,” Honasan, who chairs the Senate Committee on Public Information and Mass Media, said in sponsoring the bill for plenary deliberations at yesterday’s session. (Click here to read more)

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