Papua New Guinea
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Right to information discussed

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) under the EU-funded Preventing and Countering Corruption in PNG Project implemented in partnership with Transparency International PNG (TIPNG) partnered to host the round-table discussions.

UNDP Papua New Guinea Resident Representative, Nicholas Booth, shared that the key objective of the roundtable was to discuss the status of a way forward related to the Access to Information legislative framework in PNG.

“UNDP is pleased to facilitate today’s roundtable discussion on the PNG’s efforts to progress the establishment of an effective Access to Information system, and to raise awareness on the importance of the guaranteed Right to Information for informed and involved citizens, and for transparent, democratic, and accountable governments,” he stated.

Three main areas were discussed; their organization’s role and level of engagement in developing the Right to Information framework, the challenges they encounter, and the way forward.

Dr. Alma Sedlar, UNDP Chief Technical Adviser (Anti-Corruption), who moderated the discussion stated that UNDP stands ready to assist the Papua New Guinea Government with further establishing an effective right-to-information regime’.

Graeme Gunn, UNODC Officer-in-Charge and Anti-Corruption Advisor also stated that UNODC, as custodian of the UN Convention Against Corruption, strongly supports transparency and public participation in government decision-making processes.

She added that the freedom to seek, receive, publish and disseminate information is a fundamental pillar of the Convention that empowers civil society, community-based organizations, and ordinary citizens to fight against corruption.

The key speakers were, Flierl Shongol, Deputy Secretary from the Department for Information and Communications Technology (DICT), Arianne Kassman, Chief Executive Officer of TIPNG and Yuambari Haihue, TIPNG Deputy Director – Policy and Partnerships, Langa Kopio, Acting Head of Open Government Partnership- Department of National Planning and Monitoring and Neville Choi.

Shongol announced that public consultations on the draft Right to Information Policy will be organized in the upcoming few months for the Policy to be finalized, which would lead to drafting the legislative instructions on the Right to Information law in early 2024.