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Sunday, 15 September 2013

Stepping towards transparency: Right to Information will transfer power back to the people: Farman

Says public information officers will be provided protection, support by the govt. PHOTO: FILE


The Right to Information (RTI) Ordinance is a start in transferring authority back to the people and making government officials aware of their responsibilities, said Minister for Information Shah Farman on Saturday.

Farman was addressing a training session at Nishtar Hall organised for public information officers (PIO) by Chief Secretary Arbab Shahzad. More seminars will be arranged at the division level to guide PIOs in performing their new responsibilities. These officers are meant to act as the point person at government departments for information requests.

Provincial Parliamentary Secretary for Culture Arif Yusuf, Secretary Information Azmat Hanif Khan Orakzai, Director Information Bahramand Khan and a large number of public information officers attended the seminar.

The RTI will bring change which will be known as the change of "transferring authority to the poor and helpless of the province," stated Farman. Any deficiency in the RTI will be fixed accordingly, promised the minister.

The government is working on laws on accountability and local bodies, the benefits of which will be felt by every individual of the society, emphasised Farman. Referring to the local government system during General (retd) Pervez Musharraf's rule, he said those bodies were devised by a dictator; the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf will bring about representative governance and is working faithfully towards positive reforms.

He assured PIOs they would be provided protection and support by the government so they can perform their duties properly.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 15th, 2013.

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