RTI Bill goes through second reading

BY: Musah Yahaya Jafaru
Ben Abdallah Banda
Ben Abdallah Banda

The Right to Information Bill, 2018 went through the second reading in Parliament Friday. 

The Deputy Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mr Joseph Dindiok Kpemka, moved the motion for the second reading of the bill.

Thereafter, the Joint Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs and Communications, which was tasked by the Speaker to consider the bill, presented its report.

The joint committee recommended to the House to pass the Right to Information Bill, 2018 in accordance with Article 106 of the Constitution.
Members of Parliament (MPs) from the Majority and Minority sides made contributions to support the passage of the bill.

The object of the bill is to provide for the operationalisation of the constitutional right to information held by public and some private institutions, subject to exemptions that are necessary and consistent with the protection of public interest in a democratic society.


It also seeks to foster a culture of transparency and accountability in public affairs and to provide for related matters.

Committee's report

Reading the report, the Chairman of the Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Mr Ben Abdallah Banda, said the joint committee acknowledged the importance of access to information from public and some private institutions in ensuring transparency and accountability and for contributing towards the fight against corruption in the country.

He noted that the joint committee critically examined the bill and "is of the view that its passage will establish a robust legal framework that will guide the public in accessing information from the public and some private institutions".

Passage

With the second reading, the bill will go through the consideration stage where amendments will be made to 91 clauses captured by the joint committee.

Afterwards, the bill will go through the third reading and then be passed into law.

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