Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Freedom of Information (FOI): Don't Depend On The News Alone. You Can Access Info on Public Records Today. Find Out Here! cc @DrJoeAbah

At the Bureau of Public Sevice Reforms (BPSR), website, if you aren't aware, there is a link to the FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (FOI) PORTAL based on The Freedom of Information Act, 2011 which was signed into Law by former President Goodluck Jonathan on May 28, 2011 and came into force that same day.

The purpose and objectives of the Act, as stated in its preamble, are;

a. To make public records and information more freely available;
b. To provide for public access to public records and information ;
c. To protect public records and information to the extent consistent with the public interest and the protection of personal privacy;
d. To protect serving public officers from adverse consequences for disclosing certain kinds of officials information without authorization;
e. To establish procedures for the achievement of these purposes and for other related matters.

The passage of the Freedom of Information Act fills a huge gap which hitherto existed in the legal framework for citizen’s access to information held by public officers, authorities and institutions in Nigeria.

A few people have already visited BPSR's Website (click the link) and made requests. Posted below is an example of a request.

"I would like to know the salary scale of Nigerian senators, with their seating allowances inclusive. I also would love to know what it takes to get a civil service job as a graduate."

On occasions where the request can't be dealt with on the portal, BPSR will endeavour to point you in the right direction.

Also published on the website are related reports such as the following;

A. Freedom of Information Annual Report
B. BPSR Annual Report


Bureau For Public Service Reforms Publishes All FOI Request Received And Responded To.

Abuja 7 September 2016:  The Bureau For Public Service Reforms (BPSR) has today proactively published on its website (www.bpsr.gov.ng) a detail summary of the entire Freedom of Information (FOI) request it received and responded to since the launch of its FOI Portal.

The BPSR electronic FOI portal remains the first initiative of its kind developed by any government public institution in Nigeria for submitting e-FOI request and receiving corresponding response.

Through a joint partnership with Right To Know (R2K), Nigeria and supported by the MacArthur Foundation, the BPSR in March 2016 re-designed its website with a dedicated Freedom of Information Portal for fulfilling its FOI obligations and incorporated an innovative electronic platform for receiving and responding to e-FOI request.

To view details of the summary click http://bpsr.gov.ng/index.php/foi-requests-and-responses

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