Peshawar: Coalition on Right to Information (CRTI) has demanded Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to fill two vacant seats of information commissioners in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Information Commission (KPIC) immediately.
Due to delays in appointment of the information commissioners, the citizens constitutional right to access information held by public bodies has been violated. CRTI, a representative body of 45 civil society organisations, has shown serious concerns over delaying tactics by the KP government.
Mr. Ahmad Mukhtar Ali, Executive Director of Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) while address a press conference said that KP was the first province to enact effective right to information law. However, the implementation of the law has not been taken seriously.
He added, the information commissioner legal position has been vacant for the last three years while the other information commissioner completed tenure in July 2022. The KP government should have filled these positions immediately for smooth functioning of the information commission.
Mr. Mukhtar further said that there was huge pendency of complaints in the KP information commission and citizens were losing trust on this important institution.
Mr. Asadullah Khan, General Manager CGPA said that the law provides for at least two information commissioners to decide and issue order on complaints. However, In the past four years, there are very few instances where the information commission had required number of information commissioners to adjudicate complaints.
He added that there was no need for KPIC if it couldn’t resolve citizens’ complaints regarding non provision of information by public bodies. He lamented that there were forces who are keeping the KPIC dysfunctional, and demanded the KP government to deal with them.