Public right to know to be celebrated

Published Sep 27, 2020 at 9:05 am
(Updated Sep 27, 2020 at 9:05 am)

  • Right to Know: Gitanjali Gutierrez (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

An international day designed to highlight the publics right to access government information is to be marked tomorrow.

Gitanjali Gutierrez, the Information Commissioner, will deliver and International Right to Know Day declaration as part of the Information Commissioner’s Office commemoration.

A spokeswoman for the ICO said: “This year, the Information Commissioner’s Office celebrates International Right to Know Day as Bermuda is emerging from a pandemic, facing unprecedented challenges and on the cusp of Bermudians exercising their fundamental right to vote.

“During this unprecedented time in Bermuda’s history, Bermudians and residents expect their government and public authorities to be fully transparent and uphold good governance.”

The Information Commissioner will deliver her Right to Know Day Declaration at City Hall in Hamilton from 10am to 10.30am.

“The purpose of International Right to Know Day is to increase people’s awareness of their right to access records held by the government and other public authorities.”

The Public Access to Information Act, passed in 2010, has given people the right to access public records since 2015.

The spokeswoman said: “The Pati Act empowers Bermudians and residents to hold public authorities accountable.

“Pati rights level the playing field between the government and those that are governed.

“When Bermudians and residents use their Pati rights, it can lead to a better understanding of how and why public decisions are made.”

International Right to Know Day was established by campaigners from around the world in 2002 to mark the creation of the Freedom of Information advocates network.

Bermuda is one of 120 countries with public access to information laws.

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